At one time, individuals could easily change the oil in their cars. Nowadays, the process requires special tools and expertise. As products evolve, they become more complex, and such is the case with IT systems. The emergence of virtualization, and cloud dramatically changed system configurations. Consequently, the skills needed to restore computer systems have extended beyond the means of most corporate IT organizations, and the time has come for a change.
Digital disruption is the watchword today. A raft of recent technical advances provide corporations with a variety of ways to engage with customers, build products, and deliver services in new, exciting, and efficient ways. As a result, 89% of enterprises have plans to adopt or have already adopted a digital-first business strategy.
Falling Behind the Technology Curve
One challenge is managing the technology infrastructure that support such interactions. Businesses generate more information, support more end devices, rely on more software applications, and must meet more regulatory compliance regulations than ever before. The fallout is many IT groups struggle and sometimes fail to keep pace.
System flux is one challenge. In the past, organizations relied on a few applications from select vendors that ran on specific hardware. Nowadays, new options emerge daily, so devices range from servers to desktops, laptops, and smartphones.
Traditional buying patterns have been disrupted. Line of business managers sometimes skirt IT departments because they are in a rush to get an application up and running. Companies need a complete inventory of office equipment and applications. Often when they audit their applications, they find many that are not anywhere on the books. If a disaster arises, these departments may lose all of their work and have no way to recover it.
Updates are another problem. Vendors deliver them non-stop: Amazon Web Services upgrades it services every 13 seconds. Tracking all of the moving pieces to keep everything updated is too much for many organizations.
The global nature of business exacerbates the situation. Corporations are reaching out beyond local and national border to reach customers. Support teams in these locations may encounter downtime, but the business has no easy way to provide them with recovery systems.
Compounding the problem, new regulations were passed to ensure that companies proactively mitigate the potential risk. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) digs deeply into business recovery plans and in some cases, dramatic changes are required to meet the standard. The regulations center on where customer data is stored and protects European data, which is broadly defined and includes not only European citizens’ information but also any information traveling through European clouds. So, the small international office needs a recovery plan as robust as the corporate data center.
An Incomplete Picture
Companies are not experts in business continuity, so they often take an incomplete view of what is needed to restore the business. They focus on getting their computers online but neglect other items that employees need to work: desks, network connections, and office suppliers.
Finally, their recovery business processes are not well thought out or clearly articulated. DIS plans are quickly drawn up and often have gaping holes. In certain cases, employees may be homebound and not be able to reach a backup location. How will they be able to work?
The reality is that a business is only as strong as its weakest link, which frequently is its DIY disaster recovery plan. Many firms are courting disaster because outages happen. Thirty four percent of corporations had an outage or severe IT service degradation in the past year while half (50%) had at least one such event in the past three years, according to Uptime Institute.
More often than not, the damage is so great that enterprises never recover: a University of Texas study found that only 6% of organizations suffering a catastrophic data loss survive, 43% never reopen and 51% close within two years.
Devising viable business continuity solutions has become more challenging because of recent technical advances. In many cases, organizations depend on legacy plans that fall short of current needs. The poor planning may ultimately lead to the firm’s demise.
So, how can corporations protect themselves? The first step in solving a problem is recognizing that it exists. Organizations must take a close look at their business continuity strategy. A complete DIY approach may not provide the operational resiliency that your organization needs.
A third-party provider who specializes in recovery solutions has the expertise and solutions to keep your business running when disaster strikes. Contact Pronto Recovery today to get started!