How to Build an Effective Disaster Recovery Plan

By: Esther Shein - Leave a comment

Often, disaster recovery and business continuity plans fall to the bottom of enterprises’ budget priorities lists. And if there is a plan in place, it often contains substantial flaws. It’s no wonder that so many CIOs are experiencing sleepless nights.

As businesses move further into the digital age and continue collecting vast amounts of data, they must develop an effective disaster recovery plan. Although these plans won’t prevent ransomware and cyberattacks, a combination of robust plans and technologies can minimize downtime and allow businesses to continue operating during a crisis.

Disaster Recovery Plan Basics

Every disaster recovery plan should include thorough and prioritized goals. According to TechTarget, the plan should be scenario-based and align with the likelihood of varying types of risks, as detailed in the business’s risk assessment.

It should also include a robust communications plan to notify all appropriate parties, both internally and externally. The plan requires input from business and IT leaders who must ensure there is an appropriate budget set aside to conduct annual testing and make plan enhancements.

Resiliency in the Cloud

In lieu of building new data centers or purchasing additional hardware, more organizations are utilizing cloud services to store their applications, workloads and data. The cloud is especially useful for multinational organizations that want full backup and failover redundancy for at least some of their backups and disaster recovery sites, observes TechRepublic.

Backup and disaster recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS) are helping organizations replicate critical applications, infrastructure, data and systems in the cloud for fast recovery after an outage.

The aircraft manufacturer Textron is partnering with IBM to enhance their resiliency services. The company has taken a holistic approach to assessing all aspects of recovery by developing a road map of both critical assets and obscure dependencies, their CIO Diane Schwartz notes. Sometimes, enterprises must ask awkward questions when conducting a business impact analysis, she observes. DRaaS gives Textron the flexibility to adjust its resiliency strategies as their business needs evolve.

Cloud servers are widely dispersed and designed to be redundant. By deploying disaster recovery in the cloud, businesses can reduce capital expenditure costs, eliminate disks and backup tapes and enhance their scalability, ease of deployment and security.

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About The Author

Esther Shein

Freelance Writer

Esther Shein is a freelance writer and editor specializing in technology, business and education. Her work has appeared in several online and print publications, including Inc., Computerworld, NetworkComputing, InformationWeek, BYTE, CIO, and The Boston Globe. She has written thought leadership whitepapers, customer case studies and marketing materials in addition to news and feature articles.... Read More