What is a disaster recovery plan?

A disaster recovery plan is a comprehensive document that outlines how a business should prepare for and respond to a major disruptive event. A good disaster recovery plan will help ensure that critical business functions can continue despite the interruption.

What are the stages of a disaster recovery plan?

There are four stages of the disaster management cycle:

1. Mitigation: actions taken to reduce or eliminate the potential for loss

2. Preparedness: actions taken to get ready for an incident

3. Response: actions taken during and immediately after an incident

4. Recovery: actions taken to return to normal operations

While all four stages are important, preparedness is critical to ensure a quick and effective response when an incident does occur. 

What do you need to do to get started on your disaster recovery plan?

Here are six tips for creating a disaster recovery plan:

1. Establish a Team

A cross-functional team should be responsible for developing, testing, and maintaining the disaster recovery plan. The team should include representatives from all key areas of the organization, such as IT, finance, HR, and operations.

2. Define Critical Functions

The first step in creating a disaster recovery plan is to identify which business functions are critical and must be maintained during an interruption. For each function, you will need to determine the minimum acceptable level of performance.

3. Develop Recovery Strategies

Once you have identified the critical functions, you will need to develop strategies for how those functions can be maintained during an interruption. There are three common approaches to recovery: redundancy, backup, and restore.

4. Test the Plan

It is important to regularly test the disaster recovery plan to ensure that it is up-to-date and effective. Testing can be done through simulations or live exercises.

5. Review and Update the Plan

The disaster recovery plan should be reviewed and updated on a regular basis, at least annually. As the organization changes, so too should the plan.

6. Communicate the Plan

The disaster recovery plan should be communicated to all employees, so that everyone knows what to do in the event of an interruption.

Managed information technology services can assist with tips 1-3 and offer additional support for your business. 

What are the benefits of having a disaster recovery plan in place?

There are many benefits to having a disaster recovery plan in place, including:

  • Reduced downtime: Downtime can be costly for businesses, both in terms of lost productivity and revenue. A well-executed disaster recovery plan can help minimize downtime and get operations up and running quickly following an interruption.
  • Improved customer satisfaction: Customers expect businesses to be available when they need them. A sound disaster recovery plan can help ensure that your customers are taken care of, even in the event of a major disruptive event.
  • Enhanced reputation: Businesses that are able to effectively manage disruptions are viewed favorably by their stakeholders. A good disaster recovery plan can help protect your organization’s reputation in the event of an incident.
  • Peace of mind: Knowing that you have a plan in place to deal with disruptions can provide peace of mind for business owners, executives, and employees.

Being proactive with your disaster recovery plan can help you protect your business in the event of an interruption. By taking the time to develop a comprehensive plan, you can ensure that your business is prepared for whatever comes its way.