When most people think about disaster, they think about Flood, Fire, Tornado, and the like. However, in today’s technology climate, a potential “disaster” can lurk in the mundane, everyday tasks. It could be a simple as an employee accidentally deleting a critical file or unknowingly unleashing a virus on your network, to a power surge destroying a piece of hardware. No matter what the cause, every business will experience outages and downtime – they key is having a solution in place to ensure that you can continue operations with no (or minimal) impact to the bottom line.
To ensure that your systems, data and personnel are protected and your business can continue to operate in the event of an actual emergency or disaster, use the following guidelines to create a disaster plan that will help you quickly recover. This is the 3nd installment of the 8 steps to a Killer Disaster Recovery Plan. If you missed the first two installments, you can find them here:
Step 1 of 8 – Inventory all your hardware and software.
Step 2 of 8 – Define Your Tolerance for Downtime and Data Loss.
Step 3 of 8 – Determine & Document Who’s Responsible for What.
Step 4 of 8 – Create a Communication Plan.
Step 5 of 8 – Let Employees Know Where to go in Case of Emergency.
Step 6. Make sure your service-level agreements (SLAs) include disasters/emergencies.
“If you have outsourced your technology to an outsourced IT firm, or store your systems in a data center/co-location facility, make sure you have a binding agreement with them that defines their level of service in the event of a disaster,” says Saleem. “This [will help] ensure that they start working on resolving your problem within [a specified time]. Some agreements can even discuss the timeframe in getting systems back up.”
Step 7 of 8 – Include how to handle sensitive information.
Step 8 of 8 – Test your plan regularly.