Do you remember what happened the last time a major storm knocked out power at your small business? Until the electricity was restored, business was probably at a standstill. Today's businesses are so dependent on technology, that when there is a problem, there is no way to be productive until the problem is fixed.
What if the problem was bigger than a power outage? A water main break could pour water all over your computers. A small fire could trigger the sprinklers and cause damage to systems. A hurricane or other major storm could do damage to your office, or to the utility infrastructure where you are located. You may even be prevented from getting to your office because of snow covered roads. When your technology systems are damaged, and possibly even ruined, the information on which your company relies is trapped.
That is why backup and disaster recover (BDR) has become such a hot issue in the IT world. There are so many unexpected events that can disable a local IT infrastructure that it is crucial to think about protecting your data off-site. If your office is destroyed, or even just your computers, how would your small business recover without the important data that is stored on them? At best you would have time-consuming and costly setbacks, and at worst you would have to close your doors permanently.
The Cloud Powers BDR
Cloud storage options and sophisticated backup maintenance make BDR an accessible solution for any sized business. When you send your backups to the cloud, it is safely stored in a secure off-site location that is immune from the problems happening where your business is. Today’s online BDR solutions are able to back up multiple servers and desktops/laptops to the cloud securely whether you are at the office or off-site. This type of protection ensures you that if a disaster strikes, your data is safe. When you get back on your feet, you simply need to restore the files to the system or systems and you are back up and running.
The other component of a reliable BDR is regular backup checks and test restores. Your IT service provider can establish a regular backup schedule and ensure that all your company's data is duplicated and sent to a secure location on a by watching these backup job alerts. Scheduled test restores bi-annually or quarterly are part of any good backup strategy as well. You can even replicate crucial parts of your IT infrastructure so that you can access them remotely. This is called business continuity. If your business relies on specialized programs, this image-based backup allows you to run them in the cloud while your in-house system is rebuilt. Think of it like having insurance for your important business systems should there be a disaster at your office.
Backup and disaster recovery may seem complicated and expensive, but your IT service provider is there to make it simple and as cost effective as possible. Once the system is in place, it works automatically, and any changes or updates are handled by an IT professional. There is not any additional work for you, plus you get the peace of mind of knowing that proprietary data, sensitive financial information, client lists and more are secure even if your office is completely destroyed.
Managing a disaster is never easy with the modest resources of a small business. But keep in mind that offices can be replaced, gigabytes of information cannot. Be sure to protect your most important asset by having a BDR in place from day one. Find out more about how your company can safeguard itself by reading our newest white paper “The Ultimate Small Business Guide to IT Outsourcing.”