Do You Have a Hurricane Plan for Your Business?

People often hesitate to talk about their disaster plans, let alone make them. It’s psychological mostly, in that people don’t want to think about the possibility of losing everything, so they remain firmly planted in ignorance is bliss. Study after study has been conducted to determine the level of emergency preparedness in America and one thing is clear – most people just aren’t doing it.

And that’s when we’re talking about emergency preparation for keeping you and your family safe; basic necessities like food, water, blankets and flashlights to help you navigate the first 72-hours after a disaster. When you start to talk about disaster preparedness for your business, even fewer people have taken the time to strategize and plan.

And that’s a level of risk no prudent executive should be willing to take.

The statistics are clear, 93% of companies that were without access to their data for 10 or more days filed for bankruptcy. And if that’s not enough to alarm you, consider that 80% of businesses that suffer a major disaster will close their doors within 3 years and half of those closures will happen within the first year.

So it’s time to think about this, to really think about it, and to start making a plan. Even if your physical premises is destroyed by raging winds or flooding waters, your data can and should be effectively stored offsite so that you can restore it and resume business when the time comes. Otherwise, you’re left trying to rebuild everything, without your data.

One hour of downtime costs enterprise businesses, on average, a total of $100,000 USD. That’s per hour. And when you add auxiliary costs to that total, you’re looking at much much more. That’s an hour; imagine a month.

And even if you are all backed up, and feeling secure, do you know where those back-ups reside? If your business premises is damaged by a natural disaster, but your backups are stored in a data center just a few short miles away, or worse, within your building, you’re not exactly protected. And regardless of location, have your back-ups been tested recently?

A sound backup strategy is comprised of the following things, which are regularly reviewed and updated to ensure they remain in alignment with company goals and requirements:

  • A backup schedule designed specifically for your business
  • A business continuity plan
  • Your distinct RTO, RLO, and RPO metrics
  • A 3-2-1 Plan
  • A documented data accessibility plan
  • A backup strategy audit plan that includes regular backup testing

One of the best ways to protect your business data is to host your back ups in the cloud. In particular, the Azure Cloud offers 99% uptime and geo-replicated data redundancy that retains 6 copies of your information, across 2 locations. Your data is encrypted, safe, secure and accessible no matter what happens at your physical location.

Climatecentral.org states Houston/Galveston as the 5th most vulnerable US city to hurricanes. Since 1980, Texas has endured at least 70 hurricane degree storms, with September statistically having the most occurrences. Scientists continue to warn about the likelihood of another superstorm like Hurricane Ike, but even smaller storms and hurricanes can have a devastating and lasting effect on your business if you’re not prepared.

Risk in business is often times necessary; it is how great companies are built. But there is a difference between taking a calculated risk with the intention of driving a positive result and neglecting to properly prepare your business in the event of a disaster. Don’t put your business at risk, plan now.

Do you want to know where you stand today, so you can better start planning for the future?

Take our 30-second Backup Health Quiz, or talk to us about a thorough assessment. We’re ready to help get you prepared, so you have one less thing to worry about should disaster hit.

– Software Delivered as Promised. No Surprises.

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Lorenzo Fife

Insight written by Lorenzo Fife

Director, Infrastructure Services at Rand Group

Lorenzo Fife has over 12 years’ experience helping organizations plan and manage their technology platforms to leverage them for success. He has helped several organizations grow exponentially through the application of better IT strategies, infrastructure planning, and performance optimization. He has also enabled companies to significantly reduce overall IT expenditures while improving management, end-user, and client side satisfaction.

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