Find creative ways to test the organizations data backup to avoid frustrating moments later.

Don’t be complacent with the same continuity testing

Stephen Perkins

Organizations will often completely rely on IT services and when it comes for the business continuity plan to kick into place, technology writer Wendy Schuchart wrote on InformationWeek that organizations often stumble. When adopting online data backup or a similar technology, she suggested companies start to get creative with what they will do when it comes time to get the business rolling again. 

Schuchart said the most common way to test a continuity plan will involve key people sitting around a table and discussing the event, something that may not come in handy when it comes time to respond.

"In a real disaster, you probably won't have the luxury of having your elite team in place," she wrote. "Aside from the fact that testing occurs so infrequently that the BC/DR team has probably lost a few employees due to attrition or responsibility shifts, it's likely that some of your staff simply won't be able to report to work in the event of a natural disaster affecting the entire region a la a hurricane like Sandy or Katrina."

The importance of data backup has been made apparent time and time again, but many organizations continue to neglect testing. Computer Technology Review reported that a recent GFI Software report showed that nearly a third of small and midsize businesses don't test how effective their backup solutions are. This leaves too much to chance for organizations, as they may never know how effective their solution is before it is too late to change anything.

Schuchart said there are some steps the business can take to improve their data backup solution, including getting rid of a creature comfort to throw team members off balance and see how they respond. Organizations can also eliminate a key area of the test to see how the response will be when a critical resource goes offline.

Categories: Data Management