Do You Need a Disaster Recovery and Continuity Plan?

Jack Berberian

On September 11, 2001, Americans learned first-hand how necessary it was for businesses to create a working plan for emergency situations. Those businesses who were located below 14th street in Manhattan couldn’t operate for several weeks.

Some businesses got lucky. Some in the financial services sector were invited to use office space at other companies, such as Bloomberg. Others simply lost income day after day. Some lost their offices when the buildings collapsed.

Whether it’s a natural disaster or a terrorist attack, plans need to be created so that business can go on as usual. Here’s how to tell if your business needs a disaster recovery and business continuity plan.

A Business Continuity Plan

Keep in mind that a disaster recovery and business continuity plan are not the same things. A business continuity plan is the processes and procedures that an organization carries out to ensure essential business functions continue to operate both during and after an emergency.

This ensures businesses protect their mission-critical services because it gives them the best chance of surviving the disaster. This planning allows organizations to re-establish services to a fully functional level quickly and smoothly.

A business continuity plan generally covers most or all of the businesses most critical processes and operations. The best way to plan this is to conceptualize how you’d recommence your business if you suddenly lost your workspace.

One obvious place to start would be to develop a plan to backup your work externally, preferably remotely.

That way, no matter where your business is transplanted to, someone will be able to access all the information that’s needed to continue business as if nothing happened.

However, even remote backup plans aren’t always without problems. Part of business continuity should account for the possibility that certain apps or information may get lost.

Your employees should know exactly what to do if that happens to ensure your business gets back to running smoothly as quickly as possible.

A Disaster Recovery Plan

Unlike a business continuity plan, the disaster recovery plan focuses more on your employees. There is often more than one plan developed for specific groups within the organization. That then allows that team to recover a specific business application.

An example would be for the IT department to implement a working strategy for what they would do if the IT services were lost. Each department should have their own disaster recovery plan.

You should have one for critical personnel, key business processes, the recovery of your vital records, a list of critical suppliers, and a way to contact your key vendors and clients.

You should also have a working plan for all employees to meet up if a sudden evacuation happens. This should include a list of their cell numbers and home addresses in case you need to reach them.

Don’t forget to keep disaster kits on hand at your place of business. You should have one for each employee.

Combining Your Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan

If you value your business, don’t just create a disaster plan and call it a day. Even if you live in Iowa, you can still be at risk. An effective cybersecurity plan should be included.

Create both plans and continually update them as needed. Personnel will likely change as will which applications, software, and hardware you’re using.

We Can Help

We can help your company formulate a perfect disaster recovery and business continuity plan. Our services will help ensure that your business will still thrive even if the worst happens.

Click here to learn about our business continuity solutions.

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