Is Backup effective Business Continuity?

Written by: Liz Batley, Scholar’s Client Services Director.

Backup is a form of Business Continuity, in the sense that should you lose data, you should be able to restore the data from your Cloud Backup. Depending on the amount of data you need to restore and the type of Backup software you’re using, this can take a few minutes, a few hours or a few days.

But, when asked is Backup effective Business Continuity? My answer is ‘not for most businesses’ and this is why…

True Business Continuity services allow for you to set objectives against Recovery Time Objectives (RTO’s) and Recovering Point Objectives (RPO’s). This is really important for businesses to know when an incident occurs to know how quickly their systems can be restored.

Depending on how your business is set-up and your operational reliance on certain systems, the business case for proper business continuity can differ. But if you sat down and work through the different department scenarios of ‘what would happen if…’, the results are normally the same and would start with lost productivity, but quite easily escalate to data loss or corruption which could have serious consequences.

I recently sat with a client to discuss what they currently had in place for their Business Continuity. The CEO’s response was surprising, as he went on to say they had weekly backups and if their systems went down for a few hours, it wouldn’t really impact the operations on the business. This led me on to ask a few quick fire questions:

    • You’ve got a VoIP phone system….Where’s your phone system hosted? and what happens if that goes down?
    • You have remote staff working around the world…..What happens if they can’t access company documents or systems because your servers have gone down? And they can’t call the head office?
    •  How would your accounting team run payroll?
    • How would you sales and marketing team make calls or answer online enquires?
    • If you lost client or staff data due to database corruption, which couldn’t be restored how would that impact your business?

The list goes on, but you get the idea.

Let’s start with lost productivity – These days there are very few tasks that any department can do when the office effectively goes ‘offline’. With many offices going paperless, you can’t even do offline admin tasks anymore and you can only make so many cups of tea, before it becomes an extremely unproductive day.

At the other end of the scale, data loss is what keeps CTO’s and CEO’s up at night. With GDPR coming into force on the 25th May 2018, data security and integrity will become even more important for ‘Data Controllers’ to make sure they have the correct systems and procedures in place, to manage people’s data securely and with integrity.

Business Continuity is the new term for Disaster Recover (DR) for business. I personally prefer the term, as it reframes the need for it in the minds of clients. We manage Business Continuity on behalf of clients, which include partial Business Continuity for core systems and departments, through to full scale multi-site solutions.

It doesn’t have to cost the earth to protect your business. It starts with asking yourself and your senior management staff ‘what if?…’

If you would like to learn a bit more about Business Continuity and how it can benefit your business, give our team a call on 0845 5272 992 or visit our website for more information: