Most businesses deal with a lot of data in their operations. Handling this data is often a ‘make or break’ matter for any company, and data loss can be catastrophic for businesses, which is why it’s good to note that data loss can occur from the simplest of errors, such as faulty electrical connections of your systems. Therefore, it’s essential to have a data recovery plan to counter such occurrences.
Here are seven tips for coming up with a sound data recovery plan:
1. Identify Your Threats
Start by laying out all your business processes and identify data loss risks. Possible threats include system failures, fires, or power loss, to name a few. Don’t overlook even factors that are ‘not likely’ to cause a problem.
2. Map Out Your Data Recovery Plan
After listing the possible threats, lay down the different ways that could prevent those factors from actually causing data loss. After all, prevention is better than cure.
Identify the processes that are most vital to your business so they can be prioritized during data recovery. Having a well-thought priority list will set the objectives of your recovery plan. This allows you to work backward, creating an easy step-by-step procedure to be followed.
It’s essential to make a plan that’s easy to understand. As part of the plan, define which communication channels to use and have a standardized process that your team should follow during a recovery procedure. This prevents confusion during an emergency that would reduce the effectiveness of the recovery plan.
3. Create a Response Team
Consider outsourcing an IT team that’ll be responsible for the data recovery process. It’s crucial to select a managed IT MSP company that’s familiar with the industry you operate in and one capable of taking care of your company’s specific IT needs.
Alternatively, you could have an in-house team that will deal with possible data loss and implement your recovery plan. The chosen members should be well-skilled, preferably with an IT background. Intensively train them to avoid errors during a recovery procedure that could render your plan useless.
Allocate responsibilities to each of them to reduce confusion during implementation. With everyone knowing what to do, there’ll be no conflict on who’ll do what. However, just because everyone has a role doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be conversant with the whole process. This comes in handy if one of the members is absent during a recovery process. Their roles can be quickly taken over by another member.
4. Have Resources In Place
Besides having a data recovery plan in place, you need to have all the resources required. These resources include recovery software and backup storage. If you use hard drives as your storage preference, have spare units stored somewhere. Alternatively, this could be an opportunity for you to explore cloud-based storage.
Have all the manuals with you for your software, including their configuration procedures. In case of data loss because of software issues, you already know what to do to recover the data. This way, you spend less time figuring out how the software’s system recovery is done.
5. Test Out Your Plan
It’s one thing to have a plan in place, and it’s another for it to actually work. Therefore, it’s crucial to test out your plan in preparation for the real thing. Your response team should be the one to run these tests.
Simulate a system failure and see how your team implements the plan. From this, you’ll learn the time spent recovering from a particular risk and identify the weak points. This way, you can make changes and improve your plan. Get insight from your IT team on possible alternatives.
6. Update Your Plan
As time goes by, your business is bound to grow larger. This means that a recovery plan laid out a few months ago might no longer scaled enough to suit your company’s growing needs. You’ll have to make changes so that your new recovery plan scales up relative to the amount of data your company is dealing with.
Take note that it’s also essential to update your plan every quarter even if no major changes come up to ensure that even minor changes to the system won’t mess it up. Moreover, you should consider putting someone in charge of ensuring your data recovery plan is consistently updated based on a schedule.
With these tips given above, you’re now in a position to create an effective data recovery plan to suit your business needs. The main take-home is to clearly outline each step of the plan for easier understanding and implementation.