In the advent of business disaster, there's absolutely no time to think viably as your conscience is already dealing with trauma that the occurrence has caused. But with the best disaster recovery practices, you could relax and handle the situation efficiently without being baffled. System failure, data loss, cyber attacks, etc. are some common IT issues, which if not managed may cause irreversible damage to your business. Thus, your organization demands a potentially robust disaster recovery plan.
Now with plenty of cloud solutions and other data center services, you could design an optimum DR plan for your business. Here are a few guidelines that will help you design a quality-oriented DR plan for your organization's requirements.
- Risk assessment: Before designing the DR plan, data center managers need to process a thorough risk assessment that includes analyzing components and systems to identify the potential risks to mission-critical operations. Apart from these, there are several other things that need to be taken into account that consists of recovery facility location like it is not located at disaster prone areas, proximity of the facility, redundancy, and so on.
- Defining RPO and RTO: This is the basic and most crucial step of the entire planning as this is where you will determine what type of DR plan you will require for your business. If your organization can stand downtime for significant time, then there would hardly be any issue, but if you are into online business, you can't be downtime for more than a couple of seconds. Assess what an acceptable Recovery Time Objective (RTO) and Recovery Point Objective (RPO) is for individual set of applications and ensure to closely examine these two aspects as it can help prioritize what is exactly needed to survive a disaster.
- Communicating with personnel and assigning tasks: Having a good communication plan with employees is often overlooked. What they need to do in the event of disaster, how they can access their data and resume activities, and such other essential things must be discussed in prior with the employee to avoid confusion during an occurrence. In addition, also ensure to assign roles and responsibilities to staff that they need to take care of in the advent of disaster. Often firms fail to acknowledge employees about the DR plan and they get confused so as where to go when there's a disaster. IT managers must ensure that their employees know where to go, and access their data from at the DR site. Many organizations can afford to go offline for a longer period of time and thus, an alternative place can help resume operational activities.
- Managing sensitive data: Every organization deals with sets of sensitive data, and therefore, you need to ensure that all confidential data and information is secured and handled efficiently when a DR plan is activated.
- Testing plan regularly: Once you have designed a DR plan for your requirements, make sure to test it regularly. If you don't test your plans regularly, you just don't have a plan. Not testing DR plan regularly will probably result in a plan that do not work efficiently or as required at the time of disaster. The more comprehensive the DR test, the better it will work and the more successful the company will be to get things back on track.