Following the terrible impact of Hurricane Harvey a business owner might ask, "Weren't there ways that a business might have been better prepared?" And the answer is yes.
While Silicon Valley doesn't have to worry about hurricanes the way the Gulf Coast does, nonetheless the steps that a business should go through to prepare for just about any expected disaster such an storm, flood, fire, tornado are still valid here - even for earthquakes. [Just keep in mind that a business 'disaster' is much more likely to occur as a result of events like ransomware, key system failures and even more likely, your own employees.] Here is a very simple checklist containing the basic steps to ensure better business resiliency, so hopefully you can continue to support your customers through a disaster or quickly recover after one:
Simple Disaster Recovery Checklist
- Maintain a written disaster plan which identifies methods of communication, locations of business resources and backup work locations, maintain copies of this plan at the business, in the cloud - and review it with staff periodically.
- Check recent backups on all key production machines.
- Ensure recent backups for each production machine were sent successfully to an off site location (i.e. the cloud or another Disaster Recovery site) beyond the reach of the expected disaster.
- Verify recent backups can be used to recover each key production systems.
- Confirm functionality of uninterruptable power supplies (UPSes) on all key production systems.
- Test phone system's ability for redirection to cell phones.
- Make sure that any site you and your employees move to during the disaster has power generation, Internet and cell phone connectivity.
- Take corrective action as soon as possible.
The above list is just an outline of some key elements of a very minimum Disaster Recovery Plan. But we love to guide our clients through the creation of more exhaustive and complete Disaster Recovery Plans for their specific businesses. And of course, we work with clients to ensure that all of the items are checked off well before an expected disaster (because most of these tasks can be regularly addressed during a client's monthly Worry-Free IT Support Plan) so that businesses are more resilient, can continue to operate through disasters and recovery times are greatly minimized.
If you would like to chat about data backups, business continuity services or the creation of a Disaster Recovery Plan, give us a call.