Is Your IT Team Ready When Disaster Strikes?

January 4th, 2023

On average, a business will experience 14 hours of IT downtime per year. The cost to business operations from these losses isn’t just measured in numbers. Although the collective loss of $26.5 billion in total revenue per year due to IT downtime is staggering, there’s also the damage to reputation, customer loyalty, and even employee morale.

That is why it’s imperative to create a business continuity plan and support it with a disaster recovery plan that prioritizes a quick and successful recovery. More and more businesses are finding out the hard way that backup and disaster recovery are mission-critical – don’t become one of them! Create your plans before disaster strikes, so you will always have peace of mind knowing that your business is protected.

For many, cloud services are essential integrations into their backup and disaster recovery strategy. The ability to shift workloads between clouds means recovery is faster and easier. With options like Virtual Systems Backup and Disaster Recovery Services, you may even enjoy a hands-off approach, putting experts in charge of keeping your business always on.

How Robust Is YOUR Disaster Recovery Plan?

We don’t know where the next threat will come from, but we can make some educated guesses. Sure, it could be a natural disaster like fire or flood, but the most prevalent threats come from ransomware, human error (including susceptibility to spam or phishing), and hardware failure.

The plan you build needs to protect against any event. But more importantly, it needs to work when you need it. How do you ensure that? By involving the right people, prioritizing the right tasks, and practice, practice, practice.

Disaster Recovery Team Members

No matter the size of your organization, one person can’t do this on their own. Input should come from several sources, so that the scope of critical data is fully identified. Here’s who should be on your team:

  • Executive Management. Oversight should come from someone who is directly involved in creating business goals to ensure the business continuity strategy meets the needs of the business.
  • Crisis Management Coordinator. In the event of a disaster, you need someone to hit the button. The coordinator’s job is to kick off backup and disaster recovery procedures, oversee data recovery management, and handle any subsequent challenges that arise.
  • Business Continuity Expert. There should be someone whose sole focus is to keep business operations running by making sure the disaster recovery plan aligns with business needs.
  • Impact Assessment and Recovery Team. This team will cover networks, servers, storage, and databases to assess the damage, then develop solutions for recovery.
  • IT Applications Monitor. You need someone to monitor business applications and ensure that the right integrations, settings, and configurations are restored during recovery.

So, you’ve got the right team, but are they looking at the right priorities?

RELATED: 4 Best Practices for State and Local Government Disaster Recovery Planning

Backup and Disaster Recovery Team Goals

When it comes to disaster recovery, you need to leave no stone unturned. Your plan may be complicated and comprehensive, but that’s what it takes to ensure your data is safe and your business is secure. Your disaster recovery plan should consider all the following:

  • Business Impact Analysis. This should be done as part of the initial plan creation and may benefit from critical business unit advisors to ensure every department is accounted for.
  • 3-2-1-1-0 Data Backup Strategy. The new gold standard for data backups is 3 redundant backups on 2 different types of media—with at least 1 stored off-site and at least 1 stored offline—and containing 0 errors. This is something we talk about in Episode 7 of our Talk Nerdy to Me video series you can find on our YouTube channel.
  • Recovery Time Objective / Recovery Point Objective (RTO/RPO). How much downtime can your business tolerate, and how much data can you lose before doing harm? These answers will drive your recovery plan goals.
  • Compliance and Privacy. If you handle sensitive data that is subject to regulatory compliance, how does your disaster recovery plan maintain that compliance? How do you ensure that sensitive data is not leaked?
  • Communication. This includes matters like your reporting hierarchy, media relations, internal notifications, etc.
  • Testing. The greatest plan in the world still needs testing. Your disaster recovery planning should account for tests once or twice per year to help keep everyone clear in their role and get real-world experience in potential downtime and data loss.
  • Postmortem. Whether it’s a test or the real deal, have the whole team meet afterwards to discuss what went well and what needs to be improved.

Building this kind of comprehensive disaster recovery strategy is a huge commitment that may not be realistic for many small businesses. To have no plan means leaving your business incredibly vulnerable. Fortunately, there is another option that gives you a trusted partner who will always have your back.

RELATED: Your Essential Disaster Recovery Plan Checklist

For Some Businesses, It Makes Sense to Outsource Backup and Disaster Recovery

One of the top benefits of cloud services is having business continuity naturally maximized through redundancy and high uptime. For disaster recovery plans that require minimal RTO/RPO, leveraging cloud services provides a solution that is both economic and trustworthy.

Whether you need to fully manage your own backup and disaster recovery, or you want it to be available at the click of a button, options like Virtual Systems Backup and Disaster Recovery Services are looking extremely attractive. Instead of dedicating your own time and resources, an external team of experts walks you through the industry’s best practices to keep you on the cutting edge of risk mitigation.

With the average IT outage lasting 78 minutes, and costing $1,467 per minute, can you afford not to be taking advantage of the best backup and disaster recovery solutions in the industry?

Even if you’re satisfied with your onsite backup strategy, you may find that cloud services can fill the gaps in your own plan. For instance, M365’s 30-day retention policy leaves many businesses vulnerable, as they don’t realize that Microsoft assumes they are responsible for retention and backup. With Virtual Systems, you can build the backup and disaster recovery strategy that your business needs.

RELATED: 6 Critical Reasons for Office 365 Backup

Virtual Systems: The Backup and Disaster Recovery Experts

When it comes to replication and backup technologies, Veeam® is the industry leader. That’s why Virtual Systems backup is built on Veeam software, with maximum flexibility and reliability. We know that resiliency and availability are critical objectives for any backup and disaster recovery strategy, and your uptime is our reputation.

With Virtual Systems, you can easily verify your backups for business continuity, compliance, and even cybersecurity insurance. VMware allows you to fully test your recovery plan on a virtual machine through your vCloud portal, for easy backup and disaster recovery testing that will give you confidence in data protection.

If that sounds daunting, don’t worry, our experienced IT support team is simply a phone call away. We can walk you through recovery efforts and regain your network infrastructure. As your business continuity expert, Virtual Systems will never leave you hanging – we’re right here with you until your business processes are back online.

Add Cloud Power to Your Data Protection Strategy

Are you ready to be on the cutting edge of data backup and disaster recovery? It’s time to look at adding cloud services to your disaster planning and see how Virtual Systems can make your life easier.

Whether you’re looking for a “set it and forget it” approach, or a fully customized backup and disaster recovery package, the team at Virtual Systems is ready to see what we can do for your unique needs. Just drop us a note in this short form and we’ll start working on your personalized backup and disaster recovery plan.

Chandler, H. (2011, May 24). IT Downtime Costs $26.5 Billion In Lost Revenue. InformationWeek. Retrieved from

Jason, B, Dave, R, Julie, W. (2022, Feb 22). 2022 Data Protection Trends Report. City, ST: Veeam Software. Retrieved from

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