Your disaster recovery plan checklist

Your Disaster Recovery Plan Checklist

Having a disaster strike your business is damaging enough. Being unprepared is worse because it means having to make key decisions at a time of stress, confusion and even panic. A disaster recovery plan is a way to plan ahead so that you know what steps to take to get your tech set-up back in action so that you can get back to work. Here are some of the key points your disaster recovery plan checklist needs to address.

Define Potential Risks

Before you can figure out how to recover from a disaster, you need to work out what that disaster might be. Generally these will fall into three categories: technical failure (such as equipment breaking or software and data corruption); cyberattack including ransomware; and physical disaster such as fire or flooding. Your disaster recovery plan should address the potential damage for each type of risk.

Recovery Priorities

For each aspect of your tech system that might be unavailable after a disaster, you need to know the timescales in which the effects would move from annoying to damaging and then from short-term damage to long-term or irreparable damage. This will help prioritize which aspects to tackle first after disaster and where higher expenses would be justified.

Communications

A disaster knocking out your tech systems can compromise communication at exactly the time you need it. Think about how you would communicate with staff, including alternative measures such as phone calls, texts and online messaging, to let them know what to do while you are recovering.

Lay Out Responsibility

Your disaster recovery plan should set out exactly who is responsible for what aspect of recovery. This may mean a different division of responsibilities and authority to your day-to-day hierarchy. That’s fine as long as everyone knows in advance.

Replacing Hardware

Think about how you would replace workstations, servers, cabling and other parts of your network. Explore the costs and timescales so you can figure out the best options, taking into account the priorities you already established. Don’t overlook interim solutions such as leasing equipment.

Restoring Data And Systems

Having covered the previous points will make it much easier to do this effectively. The order in which you should get systems up-and-running and data back in place will depend on the priorities you’ve set out. Take care to avoid situations where different staff have access to different versions of the same data, some of it now outdated. Remember to comply with any data privacy laws.

Talk To Insurers

You should have some form of business continuity insurance to cover disasters. Talk to your insurer to make sure you understand any requirements and procedures, for example whether you need to authorize any spending that you’ll then reclaim.

A disaster recovery plan checklist is an important but sometimes daunting task that covers both technology and logistics. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help.

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