How Much Data Loss and Downtime Can Your Company Handle?
Unexpected downtime can lead to a chain reaction of undesirable events that can cripple your business. Whether it’s a natural disaster, human error or a deliberate attack that befalls your business, you owe it to the future of your brand to implement a robust disaster response (DR) plan that ensures you’re prepared for the worst.
When drawing up your DR strategy, two of the most important parameters to define are your recovery point objective (RPO) and recovery time objective (RTO). While your RPO refers to the amount of data you can afford to lose, your RTO refers to the maximum amount of downtime your business can handle before it suffers irreparable damage. In all likelihood, you’ll have different goals for different systems too.
Recovery Point Objectives
Should disaster befall your workplace, chances are that it will claim some or even all your systems, and that means losing data. The RPO dictates how often you need to back up your data to avoid unacceptable losses. You can compare it to the System Restore feature in Windows, which allows you to restore your computer to an earlier point in time when something goes wrong.
RPO is all about the age of the data you can afford to lose without the costs being deemed too high. You can then translate this into the maximum amount of time you can allow to pass before backing up the data concerned. For example, some datasets might be so important for your business that they need backing up every hour or two, while other systems might be just fine being backed up daily.
Recovery Time Objectives
Losing data is one thing, but unscheduled downtime can also cost your business a lot of money. From customers being unable to access your systems to employees sitting around with nothing to do, downtime will quickly become a drain on morale and productivity. That’s why you need to set a strict limit on the amount of time it should take to recover your systems after a disaster. This is your RTO.
When defining your RTO, you should consider the amount of time it will take to identify and fix the problem, recover data and applications from backup systems, and the time it will take to restore the system to optimal functionality. As with your RPO, you’ll likely also want to set different measures to prioritize mission-critical systems that your business simply cannot function without.
Determining Your Goals
A successful DR plan hinges on its ability to restore things as quickly as possible. After all, every moment is precious when it comes to dealing with the unexpected. That’s why you need to set unique objectives for different applications. For example, you’ll probably want to have a sales system back up within minutes, but a mail server might stay down for a couple of hours without causing too many issues.
Sometimes, all it takes to cripple your business is a sudden ransomware attack or an unexpected natural disaster. That’s why Red Key Solutions helps you prepare for the worst with a comprehensive backup and disaster recovery strategy. Call us today to find out more.