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Importance of a Disaster Recovery Plan for Your Network

Disaster Recovery Plan for Your Network

You run a modern business. You use computers, and you’re connected to the internet. That’s just how things work these days, and when things are in fact working, it’s pretty nice.

Networking resources allow for instantaneous communication, easy data management, and a whole bunch of efficiencies that improve your bottom line.

Unfortunately, all of those advantages come with a hidden downside. What happens if your network goes down? How can your business deal with such a problem?

The answer to that is typically found in a network disaster recovery plan, and when you understand exactly what is involved, you’ll see that a good recovery plan can be truly priceless.

What Is Involved in a Disaster Recovery Plan?

There are two ways to think about the importance of a disaster recovery plan. One is to consider the pure economic impacts of network failure and how a recovery plan can save you money. We’ll go over cost analyses later.

The other option is to consider exactly what a disaster recovery plan entails and the many ways it can help your business. For that, we can break the entire idea into four components: procedures, redundancy, policy, and maintenance.

Procedures

When an emergency happens, a set of procedures is what guides your business and personnel toward resolving the situation. Good disaster recovery procedures can help you get back online swiftly and efficiently. In essence, your disaster recovery procedures are what enable the business to get back to normal after a disaster.

Redundancy

Redundancy is what you build into the system to help avert and overcome disasters. If you invest in a backup power generator to stay operational during a major storm, that counts towards your redundancy.

The idea here is that redundancy investments can prevent network disasters entirely, keeping you operational even when circumstances would normally impair your business.

Policy

Policy is the matter of figuring out who is liable for what during a disaster. If your network goes down, are you compensated by your internet service provider or outsourced IT firm? There are countless other questions, and a good disaster recovery plan clearly outlines policy in terms of the disaster. Clear assignments of responsibility and liability can save you millions of dollars in losses.

Maintenance

A disaster recovery plan only works if you regularly maintain your networking systems and update your plan from time to time. In this way, keeping up with your recovery plan can help you spot emerging problems before they fully manifest. Disaster recovery maintenance can outright prevent disasters in the first place.

What Is It Worth to Your Business?

The point of a disaster recovery plan is to minimize downtime. That’s really the bottom line of it all, and in case it’s not patently obvious, downtime costs businesses money.

To put this in perspective, Gartner has run some statistics on this topic. They estimate that network downtime costs businesses an average of $5,600 every minute. Read that again. That comes out to $336,000 an hour, and $2.7 million per average business day of downtime. It gets expensive fast.

Your disaster recovery is worth the amount of downtime it can avert. If you get back up a few hours faster because of a good recovery plan, then you can easily save a million dollars in lost revenue. If the recovery plan saves you days, then it’s worth that much more.

The Cost of Downtime

The statistics in the previous section are eye-opening, to be sure, but they don’t personalize any of this information. Sure, businesses lose money from downtime, but what would that really look like for you?

You can actually get an idea of those numbers by thinking about one simple question. If your network is completely down, how much money will you lose each hour that it is inoperable? You might have to go through some receipts to get a concrete number, but this is a question that you can answer for yourself.

Once you have that number, you can think about the true value of your disaster recovery plan. You’ll know exactly how much money it saves you with every hour of downtime it can avert.

Additional Learning Center Resources