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Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery

Business continuity and disaster recovery go hand-in-hand. They work together to provide preparation for unforeseen risks and hazards that could hamper businesses operations:

  1. Business Continuity

    Business continuity is proactive preparation – it encompasses procedures and process that are put in place to ensure that critical business functions can continue in the event of a disaster.

  1. Disaster Recovery

    Disaster recovery is a reactive response to a disaster. It encompasses the steps that need to be taken to resume operation and recovery from a disaster.

Business Continuity Management (BCM)

business continuity

What Is Business Continuity?

The Business continuity definition incorporates having a plan to deal with a disaster. Whether you are preparing for floods, fires, cyber-attacks or losing a key employee, any form of disaster management in an effort to keep business running is known as Business Continuity.

What Is Business Continuity Management?

Business continuity management is the framework which identifies the potential risks posed to an organization. The goal of business continuity management is to properly formulate plans in response to the threats identified.

Why Is Business Continuity Important?

Business continuity could be vital to the very survival of your business. Without business continuity, your business is a sitting duck and at the mercy of any external factors that could threaten a shutdown. 25% of businesses do not reopen after a major event, and business continuity could ensure that yours is not one of them.

Business Continuity Management Lifecycle

The business continuity management lifecycle encapsulates the entire response plan in the case of a major incident. It starts long before the actual occurrence of the incident with the mitigation of risk. It moves onto preparation, response, resolution, and recovery from the incident, and ends once the business operation has returned to normality.

Business Continuity Plan

What Is A Business Continuity Plan?

The business continuity plan definition states it as a document that is created with detailed instructions and critical information required by the business to continue operation in a time of crisis. It states the essential processes of the business and details how to maintain them.

In Business Continuity Planning What Is The Primary Focus Of The Scope?

The scope of the Business Continuity Plan is primarily to understand and isolate which of the products or services of the business are the most critical and which processes support them. Once this has been identified, the plan can then be formulated to divert resources to maintain those.

What Does A Business Continuity Plan Typically Include?

The contents, length, and execution of your business continuity plan are going to be unique to your business; however, a typical business continuity plan will include the following sections:

  • A risk management plan intended to mitigate the risks that are posed to your business,
  • A response plan with detailed instructions on how to maintain operations during a crisis,
  • A recovery plan detailing how to r
  • Return to normal operation after a crisis, and
  • A testing and update schedule to ensure the continuity plan is always relevant.

What Is The Primary Goal Of Business Continuity Planning?

The primary goal of a business continuity plan is to minimize the monetary and reputation loss of the business during a crisis. It achieves this by ensuring that operations can continue despite the adverse external factors.

How Often Should A Business Continuity Plan Be Tested?

Depending on the nature of your business, your business continuity plan will be tested at different intervals. A rule of thumb is to test it once a year, but if you find yourself in a position where you lack the staff or resources to implement a full test, you can consider testing various sections of the plan in a staggered manner.

Why Is A Business Continuity Plan Important?

A business continuity plan allows you to have the framework in place to operate in a crisis. Instead of floundering or being reactive to the situation, a business continuity plan ensures that you have guidelines to follow and everyone knows their role in the event of a disaster.

Business Continuity Checklist

Before a business continuity plan can be put together, one needs to have a full scope of the operations of the business. In this regard, a business continuity checklist is a good place to start. As the name implies, it is a checklist designed to account for all the factors vital to the operation of the business.

Benefits Of Business Continuity Management 

One can never be too prepared for a disaster, and business continuity management can ensure that you have a business after a crisis event. Additionally, business continuity management is full of benefits from a human perspective. It can save lives, and also build confidence in employees and customers as they can feel safe knowing there is a plan in the event of a crisis.

Disaster Recovery (DR)

Disaster recovery

What Is Disaster Recovery?

Disaster recovery is a field of security planning aimed at restoring critical functions of a business operation in the event of a crisis. Ensuring that critical processes get up and running in as short a time as possible after a major event can greatly reduce the damage dealt to a business.

What Should Be Included In A Disaster Recovery Plan?

Each disaster recovery plan will be unique, as it addresses the specific needs of the business. However, there are a few common themes that should be included in every disaster recovery plan:

  • Assigned Roles:
    In order for a plan to succeed every person needs to know what their job is. Assigning roles lets employees know what they have to do and who to talk to should they need something done.
  • A Plan For Your Equipment:
    Equipment is one of the most expensive assists in an office, and has no way of saving itself. Therefore, you should have a plan for each item of equipment.
  • Data Safety:
    Whether you are constructing a general or an IT disaster recovery plan, data form the core of your business operations and needs to be preserved.
  • Backups And Inventory Assessment:
    Ensure that your backups are running and that you take inventory of your equipment and office supplies both before and after the disaster.
  • Pictures:
    Before any cleaning and restoration take place, you should take pictures of your office to have something to show insurance to back up your claim.

Network Disaster Recovery Planning

With the hyper-connectivity of the current business climate, a disaster may not physically affect you or your business to have an adverse effect on operations. A Network disaster recovery plan is a set of procedures designed to prepare an organization to respond to an interruption of network services.

Disaster Recovery Checklists

A disaster recovery checklist is a set of prioritized tasks that you need to undertake in order to get your business back up and running as soon as possible, to minimize losses and adverse effects that can result from extended downtime. Each business will have its own checklist as each operation is unique, but most follow the theme of starting off by ensuring everyone knows what their role is and then ensuring that the correct tasks are done in order to get the mission-critical processes back up and running.

Disaster Recovery Procedures

Your disaster recovery plan will be comprised of sets of disaster recovery procedures. These are detailed tasks that need to be completed in order to get the critical operations of the business back up and running.

Disaster Recovery Plan Testing

Having a disaster recovery plan is the first step, and it is essential. However, it is also extremely important to ensure that your disaster recovery plan will actually work in the event of a disaster. Having run at least one test is crucial, and it is a good rule of thumb to run one test every year to ensure that all the procedures are up to date and relevant.

Disaster Recovery Best Practice

A disaster recovery plan only works if everyone follows the detailed procedures. Ensuring that all employees are familiar with the disaster recovery plan is a must, and having test runs gives employees an idea of what is expected of them should a disaster occur. You need to shut down the business to test the plans, as testing can be done in stages without interfering in the flow of operations.

Disaster Recovery Services

What Is The Best Method For Disaster Recovery?

There are various methods to execute a disaster recovery plan, each with their own pros and cons. Data centers provide physical backups and are a lower risk of cybercrime but can be physically destroyed. Cloud centers are cheaper but require more reliable infrastructure to be safe and viable. The best disaster recovery is the one that works for your business.

What Are The Measures Of Disaster Recovery?

Disaster recovery is aimed at getting a business back up and running before serious consequences due to the extended downtime can occur. These goals are measured by 2 objectives:

  • The recovery point objective, and
  • The recovery time objective.

What Is RPO (Recovery Point Objective) And RTO (Recovery Time Objective) In Disaster Recovery?

RPO and RTO are the two most important objectives in any disaster recovery plan:

  • RPO is the time interval that can pass before the amount of data lost surpasses the threshold set by the Business Continuity Plan.
  • RTO is the time allowed in which the business must resume operation to avoid unacceptable consequences due to downtime.

What Are The Differences Between Backups And Disaster Recovery?

A disaster recovery backup refers to the files that have been saved off-site in case of data loss. Disaster recovery is an all-encompassing term used when denoting a business recovering for a major incident and includes the retrieval and application of backups.

Preparing For Disaster Recovery

Preparing for a disaster involves understanding and mitigating the risks posed to your business, and having a fully formed, tested, and well-understood disaster recovery plan that can be implemented seamlessly in the case of a major incident.

Testing Disaster Recovery

Ensuring your disaster recovery plan works is one of the fundamentals of creating it. Testing a plan should be done once a year to keep it relevant and up to date in order to see if there are any flaws or short-comings that can be improved upon.

Disaster Recovery Team

Should a disaster occur, the disaster recovery team is the group of individuals that have been tasked with implanting the disaster recovery plan. They can be called upon to coordinate the disaster recovery efforts and get the operation back up and running.

Phases Of Disaster Recovery

There are 4 phases to disaster recovery:

  • Migration
    This involves taking steps to reduce vulnerability to damage to people, equipment, and data.
  • Preparedness
    Preparedness focuses on understanding how a disaster might impact the business and how education and training can build capacity to respond to and recover from a disaster.
  • Response
    Response addresses immediate threats presented by the disaster, including saving lives and preserving equipment and data.
  • Recovery
    Recovery is the fourth phase of disaster and it involves the restoration of operations and procedure, returning the business to pre-disaster normality.

Benefits Of Disaster Recovery For Business

Having a disaster recovery plan put in place and tested for your business could mean the difference between your business re-opening after an incident or shutting down for good. With a proper plan and detailed procedures, your most critical operations can be brought back up and running before you have lost too much data or have suffered the consequences of being down for too long.

Why Use Active Computer Technologies For Disaster Recovery And Business Continuity Services?

When deciding on business continuity vs. disaster recovery, Active Computer Technologies are experts at both. With tried and tested experience in Data Centers and Cloud hosting, Active Computer Technologies has the experience and expertise needed to ensure your disaster recovery and business continuity plans are solid and will ensure your business is back up and running as quickly as possible in the event of a disaster. For more information, contact us today.

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Our Why

Over 25 years ago, Active Computer Technologies was created to help small businesses compete with larger corporations. Today we provide managed services Dallas businesses rely on to be successful.

ADDRESS

558 S. Central Expressway, Richardson, TX 75080
Phone: 469-853-4962