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What to Include in Your Data Recovery Plan

Did you know that there are over 600,000 new businesses across the United States each year? However, many of these companies fail within the first few years.

One of the most important responsibilities that entrepreneurs have is developing a disaster recovery plan for their data.

However, not everybody understands what they should include. We’ve put together a brief guide of everything that you need to incorporate into your data recovery plan.

Let’s get started.



Inventory of Your Hardware and Software


As you might guess, the first step is to create an inventory of all of your hardware and software. This list should include not just your servers but also any workstations, laptops, smartphones, and tablets that are used for business purposes.


For each item, you’ll want to note its location, make and model, and any relevant serial numbers. In addition, you’ll want to keep track of which software is installed on each device.


For example, you’ll want to know what devices have certain applications installed. This information will be critical for quickly getting your business back up and running in the event of a disaster.



Data Backup and Storage Procedures


The next step is to put together a plan for backing up and storing your data. This should include both on-site and off-site storage solutions. For example, you might keep a backup of your data on an external hard drive that is stored in a fireproof safe at your office.


But you’ll also want to have an off-site backup, such as in a cloud-based storage service.

It’s important to have both on-site and off-site backups because it protects your data in the event of a localized disaster, such as a fire or flood.

But it also guards against more widespread disasters, such as power outages or natural disasters.



Data Recovery Procedures


It’s crucial to put together a plan for actually recovering your data in the event of a disaster. This should include step-by-step instructions for how to retrieve your backups and get your systems up and running again.


It’s also important to test your data recovery plan on a regular basis. That way, you can be sure that it will work when you need it.



Communication Plan


It should come as no surprise that you’ll need to have a communication plan in place so that you can stay in touch with your employees during a disaster.


This should include contact information for all essential personnel, as well as a method for sending out mass notifications. You might also want to consider setting up a call center so that your employees can get in touch with you if they can’t access email or other forms of communication.



Personnel Role Identification


Your plan should also identify which employees will be responsible for each task in the event of a disaster.

For example, you’ll want to designate someone to lead the recovery effort and others to assist with specific tasks, such as retrieving backups or setting up new hardware.

By assigning roles in advance, you can ensure that everyone knows what they need to do in the event of a catastrophe.

Business Continuity Plan


Once you have all of the above in place, you’ll need to put together a business continuity plan. This should outline how your business will function in the event of a disaster.


For example, you should determine how you will stay in touch with customers and suppliers, how you will keep your website up and running, and how you will continue to generate revenue.



Identification of Sensitive Data


Identify which data is most critical to your business and put together a plan for protecting it. This might include encrypting sensitive files or storing them in a secure off-site location.


You should also have a plan for backing up this data on a regular basis.



Disaster Recovery Drills


Finally, you should conduct regular disaster recovery drills. This will help ensure that everyone knows what to do in the event of a disaster.


It will also help you identify any weaknesses in your plan so that you can fix them before a real emergency strikes.

Don’t overlook this obligation, as it can often mean the difference between whether or not you are able to effectively handle a contingency.

How Can Managed Services Help Me?


While it’s possible to put together a data recovery plan on your own, working with a professional can help guarantee that you have all the bases covered. A professional can help assess your risks and put together a comprehensive plan that meets your specific needs.


When choosing a professional, be sure to look for someone with substantial experience in data recovery. This is the only way that you can gain insight into the type of experience you will get. Although a less experienced firm won’t always deliver poor results, it will be less likely to meet your needs compared to someone who is more established.


You should also ask for references and check out online reviews. Keep an eye out for feedback that doesn’t seem genuine, however.


Understanding how to recognize fake reviews can go a long way.



Creating a Data Recovery Plan Is Easier Than It Seems


Developing a data recovery plan is essential for any business. By following the steps outlined above, you can be sure that you have everything you need to get your business back up and running if a contingency arises.

Want to learn more about what we can do? Be sure to reach out to us today and see how we can help you.

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