When you mention the term 'disaster recovery,' most people think about the big ground-shattering events like tornados, fires, floods, ice storms, etc. In fact, the Washington Post reported in April that Oklahoma has been more susceptible to weather related calamities than any other state in recent years. While these natural events are certainly disasters and devastating in their own right, smaller things can constitute as a disaster for your business, and they aren't seasonal.
Let's look at the definition of disaster.
- dis·as·ter - A calamitous event, especially one occurring suddenly and causing great loss of life, damage, or hardship, as a flood, airplane crash, or business failure.
To United Systems, a disaster is anything that involves a major loss of data or major downtime. When one of our clients experiences a server malfunction that leaves most employees sitting idle unable to work, for example, that is a disaster.
The Cost of a Disaster
Downtime is a very terrible expense to not try to avoid. Try this simple formula for yourself:
Number of Employees Affected by an IT Outage X Average Employee Hourly Cost (NOT WAGES)
+ Average Company Hourly Income X Percentage of Income Lost Due to the IT Outage
This formula will tell you estimate how expensive every hour of downtime is for your company. The most difficult value in the formula is understanding the percentage of income lost. Not all companies have a figure, but you will want to consider it as you do the math. This formula also doesn't include the cost of repair, consultation, parts, or remediation required to get things back up and running.
Disaster can strike from any direction, and often with little warning. Disk drives can fail, data can be corrupted, networks can go down, and systems can become infected with viruses and malware. User error can cause disaster, as well as theft and other malevolent activity. While companies should take precautions to safeguard themselves against threats both external and internal, and managed maintenance can prevent a lot of foreboding issues, having a solid disaster recovery plan can mean faster turnaround when there is devastating downtime.
Employing a disaster recovery plan starts with the data - your most important IT asset. Computers can be replaced, hardware can be repurchased and software can be reinstalled. Your data is the culmination of countless hours of work by all of your employees. It's no wonder why most businesses that suffer a major data loss go out of business within the first year. You can lose your credibility, and things go into disarray. Data needs to be backed up.
Your backed up data should then be archived regularly offsite. Most importantly, your backup solution needs to be easy to test, and tested regularly. You don't want to find out your backups are corrupted after it is too late.
The time to put together your company's disaster recovery solution is now. Contact United Systems at (405) 523-2162 to talk about solutions for safeguarding your data and your business in the event of a disaster, large or small.