The hardest part of a Business Continuity / Disaster Recovery plan is getting started. The task can seem overwhelming because there are so many details in so many places. But don’t let the complexity stop you. Even if you can’t put together the entire disaster recovery plan at one sitting, tackle the largest risks.
Start with manageable questions:
- Who should I contact in case of a disaster?
- Have contact information for key vendors, insurance contacts and key clients.
- Do my employees know how to contact me and each other?
- Keep a list of employees with mobile numbers.
- Do I have a contingency plan for working remotely?
- Cloud solutions are easily implemented for remote work, communication and presence management.
- Can I access my important company data?
- Data can be made available in the cloud with different levels of security.
- Can I rebuild my system if the worst happens?
- A good backup is your best defense.
During the two snow storms of 2014, the staff at LAN Systems found it rather easy to work remotely. Just before the storms, in December of 2013, we moved to Office 365. For many years, we had an in-house Exchange Server and some thought that moving to the Cloud was too risky.
We took the risk and found it very worthwhile. We used Lync to know who was available and keep in touch. Office 365 email was available through local Outlook or from the web portal. Since we use a Cloud VOIP solution, we were able to forward our office phones to mobile phones easily.
Our move to Office 365 proved to be a great solution for what could have been a temporary disaster. And those that thought it too risky, they are now technology advocates for Cloud solutions done right.
Of course, a snow storm is (at least in our case) a passing inconvenience. A fire, flood or any disaster that permanently damages or destroys your business is a greater concern. But the elements of disaster preparedness are the same. Here is a good primer from Microsoft on disaster readiness or if you would like something more structured this template from TechTarget is quite complete.