Data RecoveryDo you have the perfect disaster recovery plan? Let’s say a massive fire completely destroys your business…

How soon would you be able to get it up and operating again? If you have a good disaster recovery plan in place, you should experience almost no downtime at all.

If you’re not already doing these, this is what you should do:

1. It’s Time to Plan:

Do you have an alternate location employees can go to in the event of a disaster? Could some of them work from home? What’s the essential equipment and furniture they need to do their jobs?

2. Have an Offsite Backup:

This can be to somewhere in the cloud, or you can have a physical off-site backup. It’s amazing how many small businesses do not do this. Make sure yours does.

3. Test Your Data Recovery Plan:

Make sure you establish objectives at least 30 days before the execution of your plan. Make sure each objective happens. And if it doesn’t, find out why, and re-test until your plan is bulletproof.

4. Test Your Plan for All Possible Types of Disasters:

It could be a malicious virus, fire, flood, tornado, or any of a number of other disasters. Make sure you plan works for them all.

5. The First 72 Hours are the Most Critical!:

This could ultimately determine the survival of your business. And if not, it will at the very least significantly impact your profitability for the near future. How fast can you get up and running again?

6. Don’t Write Off All Your Equipment Immediately:

If you can physically access your hardware, you still may be able to recover the data on it. Even if it looks damaged beyond repair, you may still be able to get your data back. Don’t give up at the first sign of difficulty!

7. Consider Using a Vendor for Help:

An outsourced data protection company recovers as much of your data as possible for you. View them like you would a “first responder” to a car accident. They’ll get there faster and get you up and running quicker than you can on your own. Remember, you’re hiring someone with years of experience across many industries who knows how to properly prepare your business for every type of disaster.

8. Test Your Plans Repeatedly:

Did your data backup plan work perfectly the first time? Great! But make sure you test it at least every 6 months, better yet, every 3. Technology changes so fast that you want to make sure you have no doubts about your ability to recover quickly. Sound Like a Lot of Work? It Is! But you’ll want to do it because 93% of companies that lose their entire data center for 10 or more days, due to a disaster, file bankruptcy within a year of that disaster (according to the National Archives & Records Administration in Washington). When you talk about data backup, protection, and recovery, you can never be too careful.

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Learn more about the author Bob Martin