Disaster recovery planning is becoming more important for businesses. It may seem obvious but the risks associated with the recent storms in the UK are going to become more acute. Climate change and the frequent storms rolling in from the Atlantic are only going to get worse in the future. Business owners need to plan to prevent serious business interruption resulting from such an incident.
The lasting damage weather related disasters can have on businesses is often untold with as many as 50% of businesses experiencing a disaster, who have no plans for recovery, failing within the following 12 months. For a business to survive after a major disaster be it natural or malicious takes careful planning. There is no ‘one suit fits all’ solution for this as each and every organisation is different.
Your plan should include IT systems but don’t just think a backup of your data is enough.
Disaster recovery – what to consider?
Assess your current position
Review any plans you have in place and see if you have any obvious signs of weakness. If you can improve any existing plans you can automatically reduce your risk.
Check you have sufficient security in place. This is both physically for your premises and also your IT systems. Give guidance on how employees should protect the premises, equipment and their personal belongings. Make sure they understand how to raise the alarm should something happen.
It seems simple enough but identify hazards and reduce the threat from these. Make sure fire alarms and detectors are installed and tested. Make sure extinguishers are available and staff know how to use them correctly. Test appliances, electrical fires are common. Finally, manage and test your plans should a fire occur on a regular basis.
Computers and data
Prevent unauthorised access to programs and data within the business as well as securing it from external sources. Make sure you have regular backups in place, they are taken off site and are regularly tested to make sure the data is viable after restore. Document the systems in place including hardware and software used. Keep details on all licences and have copies of these and the installation software available off site.
Make sure staff know where to work from in the event of the office being unavailable. For companies using cloud services it could be as simple as working from home. Larger organisations may have a DR site to work from with equipment in place.
Keep personal contacts for all staff including phone numbers and email addresses offsite. This will speed up notification in the event of a disaster and saves confusion at a stressful time.
If you have any issues around your disaster recovery planning especially focussed on your IT systems please get in touch. We can assess your existing systems and identify areas of weakness you may have and help address them.
To find out more, please call us on 0845 504 8989, or complete our contact form.