In the most basic possible terms, business continuity is the idea that your business should be able to use technology to survive a major, and often complete, disruption of its normal operations.
But do you really need to invest time in creating a plan? The short answer is absolutely.
Let’s start by looking at some of the numbers involved with downtime.
Downtime by the numbers
The leading causes of downtime are operational failure (45%), natural disasters (35%) and user error (19%). A whopping 95% of businesses have experienced downtime for reasons other than a natural disaster.
In short, these threats are common and many of them are almost impossible to completely prevent.
Consider too that 80% of small businesses have experienced downtime at some point in the past, with costs ranging from $82,200 to $256,000 for a single event. But What does this mean for IT?
Every minute counts in a data recovery scenario – to the tune of $137 to $427 per minute.
When any of these events occur, your response will determine the future of your business, and therein lies the importance of disaster preparedness. Having a business continuity plan to follow when disaster strikes, especially one that’s been practiced and refined to suit your business’s needs, is often the difference between success and failure.
What does a business continuity plan consist of?
It’s pretty clear that there’s a huge danger for your business if you’re not prepared for disaster. To ensure your organization is prepared for disaster, you’ll want to double-check your existing processes (or create them from scratch, if necessary).
Luckily, there are many things your business can do to ready itself for a possible disaster. A few examples include:
Train all employees in network security best practices
- As your front line of defense, employees can make the difference between ransomware and phishing attacks from making it into your network or not. You can train them to reduce the volume of these attacks to stave off downtime.
Implement bring-your-own-device (BYOD) and remote workday policies
- Investing in BYOD helps you to create a contingency plan for your employees so that they can work from anywhere. If your business is affected by a disaster, they’ll be able to keep working from wherever there’s internet. Setting that up ahead of time is the key to speedy recovery and skipping the disruption in workflows.
Modernize your network infrastructure
- Getting old and obsolete networks up and running after a disaster can be a huge challenge. Proactively modernizing your network with cloud backups and other modern measures can speed the recovery of these systems.
Regularly backup your data, systems, and network configurations
- Depending on your recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO), you’ll need to create a backup strategy that support your overall business continuity plan. Those that can’t go a minute with downtime will need immediate failover circuits so that there’s no interruption in work. Those that can stand to lose hours and days can invest in off-site backups from which they can access data and restore to new equipment, when available.
That’s just a taste of what goes into business continuity planning. Companies that have up-to-date technology and practice recovery are almost always going to be built to survive disasters better than those that lag behind.
How Michell help you plan for tomorrow
Business continuity planning is an essential part of business (especially for Florida businesses that must deal with hurricanes). And while planning out a business continuity strategy is necessary, it isn’t always easy.
Many companies need an experienced overview from a third party that knows what to look for and how to optimize the plan. As a result, many organizations turn to experienced managed service providers for help.
That’s where Michell comes in. From initial consulting to assistance in sourcing components along the way, we can help you create a business continuity strategy that keeps you going, no matter what.
Contact us today to learn how we can help your organization.