Disaster recovery and business continuity planning are two critical enterprise processes. They are essential in preparing businesses for disruptive occurrences of any nature. But what do these processes entail? This post will shed more light on them. It will discuss their basics to enable you to know how to perform them. Our discussion will also show you their benefits. Remain with it to discover more and benefit.
How Business Continuity Planning and Data Recovery Differ
Before proceeding, we must differentiate these two processes. The reason is that, although they are connected in essence and results, they differ. First, business continuity (BC) takes a more proactive nature. Generally, it deals with processes and procedures an enterprise must execute to guarantee that its core activities during and beyond a catastrophe. It also deals with thorough planning to maintain an enterpriseís long-term success despite disruptive challenges. So, we can say that it focuses on the organization.
Inversely, data recovery or DR focuses on steps a business should take to recover after a disruptive event. Therefore, itís more of a reactive process that responds to an event. Also, it focuses on technology and infrastructure.
Key Components to Include
So, what components should you include in your VMware backup and BCDR? This section discusses some of the most important components that will help your plan succeed.
- Business-Wide Involvement
It takes every stakeholder to run a successful enterprise when a disaster strikes and post-disaster. Therefore, your plan should include every relevant stakeholder. Moreover, let everyone in your organization know what to do, whom to call, and where to go during an emergency.
You must test your data recovery plan to make sure it works. Testing assists in identifying the main areas requiring extra focus and planning. Otherwise, you wonít know what works and what doesnít work. Hence, your recovery processes will not yield the desired results.
- Identify the Risks
Risk identification is another critical component you should include in your plan. Therefore, identify the leading risks that could face your business. This identification will let you know what you can afford to protect, assign what you canít afford to protect and lose, and accept which risks you will handle later.
- Document Process, Policies, and Procedures
Also, your plan should document the policies and procedures that will support the downtime. For instance, if you require another person to stand in for you, show them how to do it.
- Alternative Suppliers
Your plan must include alternative suppliers to provide essential services. The reason is that your current ones could fail or go out of business. Remember, even large international companies shut down operations due to supplier failure.
- Perform a Thorough Business Impact Analysis
Lastly, donít forget to perform a business impact analysis. The plan will identify the impact of a sudden loss of business functions plus their cost implications. It also enables you to know whether you need to outsource your non-essential operations in your BC plan. Lastly, it enables you to look at your businessís processes and decide the most critical ones.
Your BC and DR plan will include steps. When developing it, you have to include the following in your planning process:
- Determine the scope
- Establish core enterprise operations
- Identify the most important activities
- Determine discrepancies between different business areas and activities
- Establish acceptable downtime for all essential operations
- Create a plan to maintain essential activities
The Benefits of BC and DR
So, how do BC and DR benefit an organization? Here are the main benefits your business will enjoy when you implement them well.
- They reduce the consequences of data loss and disruption of enterprise operations.
- They help your business to get back on its feet after disruptions.
- They minimize the possibility of losing data.
- They help you maintain your businessís reputation after a data catastrophe.
- They improve operations during a disaster.
- They enhance business preparedness during a disaster.
Business continuity planning and data restoration are critical processes. They have many benefits that an organization can enjoy if implemented correctly. Moreover, they require that you draft them carefully to get the best out of them. We hope the fundamentals we shared here will enlighten and empower you to utilize them effectively.