Simon Johnson, disaster recovery practice lead at GlassHouse Technologies (UK) discusses the importance of a disaster recovery (DR) strategy and asks how much downtime can you really afford and what level of protection can you get away with?
Applications and the information they hold are increasingly the lifeblood of many organisations. In my experience, many businesses which have encountered major loss of data are never able to reopen; some attempt to but do not succeed and only a handful survive. This just goes to show the long-term importance of a business aligned DR strategy today.
For an enterprise-wide DR programme to be truly effective the IT requirements need to reflect business needs and the value of the assets that are being protected.
Once an organisation can capture what assets they have, the external and internal risks they need to be protected from, and how to maintain the accuracy of those assets, an analysis of the impact of loss needs to be performed.
The understanding of ‘actual business needs’ and impact of loss can be determined through a Business Impact Analysis (BIA). This identifies how much downtime you can actually afford and therefore, what level of protection you can ‘get away with’.