Arraya Insights | September 17, 2019
When’s the last time your organization put its disaster recovery strategy to the test? For some, it may have been a while. It’s understandable. After all, testing necessitates a commitment of time and resources that IT teams can’t always readily afford. Yet, in our experience, the benefits of testing a disaster recovery plan are absolutely worth the temporary hardships.
Let’s take a look at four of the most pressing reasons to test your organization’s disaster recovery plan ASAP.
Reason #1: Testing minimizes the business impact of a disaster. It’s hard to predict exactly how much the unexpected downtime of a critical application could cost an organization. Factors such as industry, organizational maturity and the role of the application among others must be weighed to begin putting a number on it. While the cost of downtime may be unique from organization to organization, one thing is certain. Organizations that prioritize disaster recovery preparedness experience shorter incidents of downtime. Shorter incidents mean happier customers and end users and, generally, less lost revenue. This makes recovery testing less of an expense and more of an investment.
Reason #2: Testing makes your disaster recovery plan better. It’s probably not a controversial statement to say that on-paper and in-practice are two different things. A disaster recovery plan that looks good on the page may hold some unpleasant surprises when it’s actually put to use. The numbers back up that claim. One study suggests that disaster recovery plans subjected to regular testing are 132% more successful than those that go untested. Given the increasing likelihood of digital disasters, that kind of success (and confidence) boost seems like something any organization would want on its side.
Reason #3: Successful testing doesn’t come down to dollars and cents. It isn’t just testing either. Disaster recovery success itself isn’t predicated on cost. Research shows that simply wielding a large budget and having the ability to perform big, expensive tests doesn’t automatically make an organization’s disaster recovery plan better. Instead, testing is more about process and mindset. With the right process and participants who are fully engaged, a series of smaller, less expensive tests can be far more meaningful than a costly one where the opposite is true.
Reason #4: IT doesn’t stand still and neither should your disaster recovery plan. Organizational IT environments are constantly evolving to continue to meet the needs of end users and customers alike. As such, a disaster recovery plan created, say, three data center iterations ago may not do much good given an environment’s present state. Regular, routine testing ensures that an organization’s disaster recovery strategy is tuned to its technology environment as presently constructed. Should it be called into action, organizations can rest easy knowing their plan won’t be disrupted by surprise gaps created by technology upgrades.
Next Steps: Know your disaster recovery plan is ready for anything
Disaster recovery plans shouldn’t be set and then set aside. Instead, they need to constantly evolve to not only keep up with changing IT environments but with shifting threat landscapes. The only way a plan can stay in line with both the technologies and the threats around it is with regular testing. Just knowing the importance of disaster recovery testing doesn’t make it suddenly easy to devote time and resources to the cause. That’s where Arraya can help.
Arraya’s Disaster Recovery Validation services can help organizations ensure their disaster recovery plans are ready for the worst that hackers, Mother Nature and everything in between can throw their way. Our team will leave participants with the documentation, procedures, and technical recommendations needed to keep data and workloads safe and available. Want to learn more about our Disaster Recovery Validation services? Visit https://www.arrayasolutions.com/contact-us/ to connect with our team today.
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