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6 Key Steps to Prep and Execute a Disaster Recovery Plan

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By Regina Wheeler:

No matter the type of organization you own or operate, all businesses and companies rely on a steady (usually growing) stream of information and data. This data is crucial for operation, and because of its value must be protected in case of disaster. Data is constantly vulnerable to attack from things such as internal corruption, external attack such as hackers, human error, and natural disasters. The six simple steps detailed below will allow you to draft, create, and implement a disaster recovery plan if your company’s information or servers are ever compromised.

1: Decide on Your Company’s Most Valuable Assets – For the majority of businesses, the most important digital assets include their enterprise resource planning system, privileged product drafts and plans for external marketing, and company documents (including customer information). The first important step is to break down and characterize your assets by their importance. Group these assets into three ‘critical’ categories: business critical, important, and noncritical. Maria Smith, a prominent business author from 1 Day 2 write and Origin writings once said, “Categorizing your assets will help you focus on recovering the most vital ones first so that your business can recover and re-start operating again as quickly as possible it can post-disaster.”

2: Figure Out the Recovery Window – Although it will not be possible to be completely sure of how long a recovery plan will take until an actual disaster occurs; your company will need to estimate how long it will take to fully recover as a business, and how long it will take to get your company back online post-disaster. Much of this depends on the recovery solution that your company decides on.

3: Pinpoint Your Recovery Solution – Data backup should be the first step when setting up a business that is heavily reliant on data and information.  There are many options available for backup, ranging from disk and tape backup to online services such as the cloud. As well as localized backup on-site, every company should have off-site data storage and back-up. Companies with a large amount of valuable data and sought-after information will often have multiple off-site data storage warehouses, the locations of which are often concealed except for a few key trusted members of staff.

4: Write up the Draft Recovery Plan – Your draft recovery plan must be detailed and straight-forward enough that it can be executed by someone with little knowledge of your company’s systems and assets would be able to implement it as quickly as possible in case of an emergency. Store and back-up this plan, ensuring key staff are briefed on it.

5: Test the Plan: Alexi Everett, a journalist at Writemyx and Brit Student, noted that; “Testing a disaster recovery plan as soon as it is drafted and written up is crucial and is the only way to ensure its effectiveness in case of emergency.” Test the plan in a real-world situation and circumstance, in an unbiased environment. You will find holes and gaps that need to be fixed on your first test run, and if you do not; I would suggest running it until you do.

6: Regularly Test & Fix Gaps in the Plan – The business world is constantly changing and adapting to new circumstances. If your business is not constantly changing and updating its systems and technologies to match this activity, it will fall behind and become vulnerable to disaster. It will not suffice to simply test your disaster recovery plan once and leave it to lie. At least, I would recommend testing and adapting your disaster recovery plan once every 12 months or whenever a large shift is encountered in your field of operation.

Every business is different and will thus need a suitably tailored disaster recovery plan. Draft a recovery plan that suits your business and the information and assets that are most critical to its operation. Ensure that your disaster recovery plan will be able to assist your business recovers ad recuperates as quickly as possible in case of emergency.

About the Author: Regina Wheeler is an online learning consultant at Dissertation writing service and Cheap coursework. She enjoys being involved in multiple projects and enjoys discussing and writing on topics such as management, marketing and business. If you would like to read more of her work, you can find it on Academic brits.

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