Know your business' road map in order to improve efficiencies in disaster recovery and business continuity operations, says Dimension Data New Zealand's Joel Pulham.
The need for robust backup and recovery systems has never been more pressing.
Data growth continues unabated and according to IDC, the amount of data created and replicated globally in the form of emails, instant messages, documents, images, videos and social networking will exceed 35 trillion gigabytes by 2020.
To complicate matters further, corporate governance and industry legislation have made executives liable for the security of their corporate information, forcing them to provide evidence of due care and diligence regarding how data is stored.
At the same time, virtualisation and cloud computing are reshaping the face of business. While these initiatives hold the promise of greater efficiencies and cost savings, consideration needs to be given to how they affect the security and integrity of an organisation’s data.
For these reasons, backup and recovery is something that CIOs and IT managers need to put very firmly on the corporate agenda.
Know your back up
To improve efficiencies of disaster recovery (DR) and business continuity (BC) operations, it’s important to define your business’ roadmap.
It comes down to what your environment looks like now, and understanding or defining your roadmap around your business’ needs.
You’ve also got to gain an understanding of what you are backing up – too often we back up everything and we treat all our data the same way.
Data classification is a big thing and if you can understand how important your data is you can then make calls around how to treat it – whether you send some data offsite, because you don’t need it as quickly when you want to get it back, and whether you store some close by so you can recall it quickly.
There are some recurring disaster recovery and business continuity mistakes that businesses need to watch out for.
For example, it’s important that businesses treat DR and BC as two separate, distinct things. Many think if they’ve got one, they’ve got the other, but they’re two different projects.
In saying that, you can’t have one without the other. One is built around a process, the other is the technology.
Business continuity is about how you keep your business running in the event of something happening, while disaster recovery is about recovering your data when something happens.
Some businesses think if they back up their data offsite, they’ve got disaster recovery sorted. But business continuity is about when you initiate the use of that disaster recovery site, and how you migrate across to it.
Each business’ disaster recovery and business continuity needs will be different, so it’s imperative to know what the right approach is for yours to help you prepare.
Joel Pulham is sales specialist at Dimension Data New Zealand , an ICT services and solutions provider which uses its technology expertise, global service delivery capability and entrepreneurial spirit to accelerate the ambitions of its clients.