Disaster Recovery buyers guide

Mention disaster recovery to someone in IT and you get a similar reaction to talking about plane crashes at the airport. It’s that mix of bravado and fear, combined with fingers crossed behind the back. Many people quote a statistic suggesting that 80 per cent of businesses affected by a major incident close within 18 months, and although no-one seems able to find an actual survey backing this up, it’s obvious that a large-scale IT failure is going to cause big-time problems. What’s more, disasters do happen, and they don’t need to be dramatic to cause problems. A corrupted hard disk on the database server could lose all your customer data; an email system down could mean you’re paying staff to sit and play Solitaire.

There’s a tendency to put disaster recovery a long way down the list of everyday priorities because there are always more important things to do, as in: “If you don’t win that new order, there won’t be a company to recover!” This may be the reason Gartner estimates that only 35 per cent of SMEs have a comprehensive disaster recovery plan in place.

If you don’t have any plan in place, then start with the basics. It’s better to have the essentials covered and then add the trimmings over time. Work out what would really be disastrous if it disappeared, and how rapidly the company would need to regain facilities such as email and Web presence.

Read more about disaster recovery.