Trends: Why You Should Take Disaster Prep Seriously

Severe Spring Weather Highlights Need For Backup & Disaster Recovery

Hurricane season officially started on Monday, June 1st. And although the NOAA estimates that this year will be a slow one for tropical formation in the Atlantic Ocean, the occasion still highlights the importance of disaster preparedness — especially in light of the devastating thunderstorms, tornados, and floods that struck a broad swath of the country in April and May.

Many business owners overlook remote backup, disaster preparedness, and business continuity planning because they assume a natural disaster will never affect them.

But natural disasters aren’t the only things that can bring a business to its knees. Software and hardware failure, human error, and other unavoidable catastrophes actually strike businesses far more often — they just don’t make the news the way tornados, hurricanes, and earthquakes do.

So what can you do to give your business a leg up when it comes to disaster preparedness? Start with off-site, redundant, and encrypted data backups. The vast majority of business backups are done on-site — often on drives located directly next to the computers they’re backing up. If fire, flood, or theft affects your business, you can’t expect those backups to be spared.

Prepare risk assessments that plan for the aftereffects of any crisis, not just specific threats. Instead of getting bogged down in the details of a particular disruption, comprehensive disaster recovery planning should address the steps necessary to get your business up and running, no matter the event.

Formulate a business continuity plan. Many business owners think that, even if a disaster strikes, they’ll only be affected for a few days. This is one of the most indirectly harmful assumptions one can make — take Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Sandy for instance, which both put more than 50% of the small companies in their paths out of business for good. Those that were able to maintain operations via mobile phone, laptop, or good old-fashioned handshakes were the ones that saw their reputations strengthened in the wake of those devastating storms.

Create (and test!) a virtualization strategy before disaster strikes. The best disaster preparedness plans include virtualization, which takes the data you have backed up remotely and rebuilds it on existing or secondary equipment in case of disaster. But if you haven’t tested your solution to see how quickly it can retrieve information and get you back up and running, you could suffer. Top-tier offerings like CMIT Guardian can perform a full restore in less than 48 hours — and those hours can mean the difference between weathering a storm and succumbing to it.

Understand incident management. This focuses on employee responsibility and communication — how everyone will be notified in the wake of a disaster, who handles which parts of the recovery plan, what lines of communication will be relied upon, primary roles vs. backup roles etc. Testing these in advance is crucial to success.

Even if this information convinces you of the critical nature of disaster preparedness, you may not know how to implement such a plan. That’s where CMIT Solutions comes in: we specialize in backup and disaster recovery solutions that can help small to medium-sized business prepare for and weather even the roughest of storms.

In the last few years, CMIT Guardian has protected scores of businesses from hurricanes, floods, wildfires, ice storms, along with the day-to-day perils of human error and hardware failure. As fellow business owners ourselves, the best feeling we get is when we can help you overcome such obstacles. Contact us today so we can put you on the path to well-prepared success.

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