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Mitigating business risks - what do you protect first?

A robust disaster recovery plan is a business essential for operating in today’s always-on online world. When disaster strikes you need to put your plan into action and doing so in the most efficient way possible minimises the risk and reduces the impact on your business. So which services do you protect and in what order do you restore them? It all starts with the service catalogue.

The Service Catalogue

The service catalogue is core to IT service delivery. It contains a centralised list of services which IT delivers to the business via the IT service portfolio. For example, email would be a service delivered to the business but creating an email service includes setting up the necessary hardware, software and communications infrastructure from the IT services portfolio.

A well-defined service catalogue is the starting point for an effective disaster recovery plan. A service catalogue not only lists the services that IT provides to the business, but it should also list the dependencies each service has on each other. If we go back to our email example, the email service would be impacted if there was a problem with Internet access and furthermore an impact to the email service may have an impact on other systems which depend on it for communication.

By creating a service catalogue and defining a service map of dependencies, you can delineate the critical components of your key IT services which you can the prioritise for rapid restoration in your disaster recovery plan.

The Revenue Stream

The primary goal of a disaster recovery plan is to protect the business’s revenue stream.

Organisations generate revenue in many unique ways, but all are dependent on IT systems in some way or another. An e-commerce website is totally dependent on its website to generate revenue when the site is down no money can be made. A professional engineering team, on the other hand, generates revenue through billable hours so if their website is offline it probably will not result in direct revenue loss.

Each organisation should therefore critically examine all its IT systems to ascertain which are needed for revenue generation and prioritise these systems in the disaster recovery plan. Special care must be taken to ensure any dependencies are also met to ensure a fully functional system.

If we take our e-commerce example, email might be a critical dependency as orders on the site are verified through this medium. So even though the main site may be functioning, revenue generation is degraded due to the inability to place orders. In that instance, email is also a revenue-generating system and needs priority in the disaster recovery plan.

Communication

Communication is key during a disaster. When your systems are down you need to be able to communicate with your customers, staff and other relevant stakeholders.
All communication systems should, therefore, be prioritised during a disaster recovery which would include services such as Internet access, email, voice communication and any other medium used by the business to correspond with other parties.

Mitigating Risk with Cloud Backup and Disaster Recovery Plan

Disaster recovery is a key business requirement but not all disaster recovery solutions are created equal. In today’s always-on online world, any form of downtime will have an impact on your business, but downtime affecting crucial systems used to generate revenue or communicate with customers could severely cripple your business if recovery is not rapidly and efficiently executed.

A cloud-based backup and recovery services can go a long way in ensuring you have the best possible recovery scenario in the shortest possible time. Built on Veeam’s award-winning backup and recovery platform, Nexon gives you the ability to rapidly recover what you want, when you want it. In addition, verified recoverability and complete visibility give you the peace of mind knowing your data is safe, secure and most importantly recoverable when disaster strikes.

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