11-18-19 | Blog Post

Disaster Recovery lessons we all can learn

Blog Posts

Thanks to the cloud, disaster recovery has evolved from a complex beast that was difficult and expensive to manage into something a little simpler and tamer to handle. Does that mean DR is something where we “set it and forget it”? Hardly. In this post, we break down some lessons learned based on some surprising statistics that will change the way you approach your DR strategy:

Lesson 1: Downtime costs more than you think

According to an IDC study, the cost of a single hour of downtime can range from $100,000 for small businesses to $1 million for large enterprises. For smaller organizations, that kind of financial hit can be extremely hard to overcome. Even for larger organizations who have the financial stamina to withstand that revenue loss, the extra challenge lies in outlasting the loss of reputation that often hits organizations with substantial or frequent downtime. Not to mention, employee productivity is at its worst in the aftermath of a disaster, according to a survey by the Disaster Recovery Journal and Forrester Research.

Lesson 2: Never underestimate the (destructive) power of Human Error

We often think of natural disasters, such as a fire, hurricane or flood, that are most prone to wipe out a business. And while Mother Nature is indeed a force to be reckoned with, it’s actually humans and our penchant for messing things up that makes organizations far more susceptible. In fact, according to analyst group Dynamic Business Technologies, 45 percent of disasters are caused by human error. Unfortunately, that sobering statistic makes sense when you think about how large and complex our networking configurations are today. Even with the advent of the cloud, network configuration and firewall setup is still a highly manual process. And when you have 3,000 million ports with network traffic to manage and firewall rule changes that happen every other day, it’s only a matter of time before a slip-up  causes the network to crash.

Lesson 3: Time to adopt a new motto

When it comes to developing a strong disaster recovery and/or business continuity strategy, you should adopt the motto of the Boy Scouts or Scar from Lion King — “Be prepared.” More than 50 percent of organizations feel their current disaster recovery plan doesn’t adequately prepare them in case of a real disaster.

Another surprising find–according to a Spiceworks study. 23 percent of organizations never test their recovery site. Ever. Don’t be that group. Testing your recovery environment is critical–it helps ensure everything is working like it’s supposed to and allows you to safely make fixes without feeling the pressure of a system failure or a hurricane hot on your heels. Besides, the last thing you want to worry about in the middle of a disaster is whether your failover environment is working properly.

Lesson 4: A disaster can permanently put you out of business. No really.

According to the US Small Business Administration, 90 percent of small firms go out of business within a year of a disaster unless they can resume operations within five days. According to Consolidated Technologies, 94 of companies that experience severe data loss do not recover, and 51 of those companies close within 2 years of data loss. Of those companies that close, 43 percent never reopen. That’s tough odds to overcome. Beat the odds with a strong DR and business continuity plan that allows you to continue running with confidence during even the worst disaster.

Key takeaways

A disaster can have real impact on a business and cause a significant loss of revenue or even force a business to close if they don’t have a proper, working DR plan. That’s why it’s never been more important to have a recovery plan tested and in place. If you’re ready to put your organization, large or small, into a high state of IT resiliency, we can help! Otava’s disaster recovery as a service, powered by Zerto, helps you stay up and running in the face of cyber attacks, natural disasters and system failures. Together, we got this!

Want to check out even more stats about disaster recovery? Check out our infographic, DR by the Numbers. Or, visit our cloud, security and DR library of resources for more information.

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