Because of the relative rarity of a significant system outage, many SMEs have deliberately underinvested in their data protection provisions. Backup allows them to recover almost all of their systems and data (eventually), so why invest in a true disaster recovery solution?
Although most see this as a calculated risk, the impact of an outage can be devastating for a data-driven business. Here’s what you need to consider before trying to justify not investing in disaster recovery tools.
Reducing RPO windows
It is possible to recover most of your data from a traditional backup but:
- The process is typically quite slow
- Data changes significantly between backups – how much information can you afford to lose in that window?
It is entirely possible that relying on backups could cost your business 22 hours or more lost productivity.
A disaster recovery platform is specifically designed to reduce the recovery point objective (RPO – the amount of data your business can ‘afford’ to lose) to minutes or seconds. Cloud-based DR systems also allow you to create service tiers so that you can prioritise what is protected, the performance of the underlying infrastructure and how it is brought online in an emergency. This granular control ensures you can balance availability, performance and cost to meet your strategic recovery goals.
Modern disaster recovery platforms use the cloud to provide massive scalability without upfront hardware investment. You simply pay for the storage you use. There is no longer any need to invest in co-located data centres, duplicate hardware set-ups, licensing or the resources required to administer them.
Using cloud-based services allows you to avoid significant up-front capital investment – immediately answering one of the main arguments against deploying DR. It also ensures that your data is fully recoverable from anywhere in the world.
Built for the cloud
Backup and recovery tools are normally designed for use with on-premise systems. This becomes a serious shortcoming as your business adopts more cloud-based services.
DR tools are increasingly cloud-native, meaning that they can capture snapshots of data stored in hosted systems. Importantly, they can also restore data to other cloud platforms, offering a useful alternative if your on-premise data centre is out-of-action.
Improve your testing capabilities
Disaster recovery tools create a complete copy of your operating environment that is ready to be recovered at any moment. However, you can also use these DR copies for advanced testing and planning.
Say you want to assess the potential risks associated with a new software update. Rather than deploying into your live environment, you can use a DR copy. All of your tests are completely accurate and reliable because the copied system is identical to your production environment. Tests can be completed without any risk to operations.
To learn more about why your business can’t afford to not invest in disaster recovery tools – and what you stand to gain – please get in touch.