What Is Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR)?One of the most popular examples of where the business continuity plan and disaster recovery helped companies worldwide was the lockdown during the Covid-19 outbreak. Companies with strategic plans for disaster recovery were able to handle and survive Covid-19 financially and even were able to function financially, while companies without any strong planning failed or took on heavy losses.
Why a BCDR plan is essential in the 21st century:
- With the help of a better BCDR, companies can evaluate and process how technology can be used to their advantage.
- Another benefit would be the alternative source of documentation with the information plan.
- The BCDR plan can also be used in product planning & development, as well as delivery & other activities.
- In addition to these 3 key advantages, BCDR offers an alternative key source of contact information.
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5 Key differences between business continuity and disaster recovery plan:
- The business continuity planning and management mainly focuses on the continuity of business in event of a natural or man-made disaster. This is majorly done with the help of financial stability. On the other hand, the disaster recovery plan offers recovery and access to the data & IT infrastructure of an organization in the event of a disaster such as a cyberattack.
- While a business continuity plan might have to remove excess workforce for financial stability, disaster recovery plans often have approaches like hiring new employees to help the company in needed times.
- One of the key differences between these two is that business continuity focuses on operational downtime. Inefficient or abnormal system functions are handled with the help of disaster recovery.
- In the event of a disaster or unlikely event, a business continuity plan will ensure communication and operations. Disaster recovery will focus on the organization’s ability to recover from the said disaster.
- The last key difference between a business continuity plan and disaster recovery is that disaster recovery is often a part of the business continuity plan or strategy.
Importance of Business Continuity PlanningThe business continuity plan ensures the continuity of operations in a business or organization in the event of a disruptive event.
Threat AnalysisIdentifying potential threats to an organization and planning strategies on how to address them is the first step of a business continuity plan. For example, a business continuity plan offers threat analysis on:
- Power outage
- Vendor errors
- Natural disaster
Role AssignmentWith the right chain of command, these unlikely events can easily be survived by the company. However, with the chain of command, the strategy to deal with the absence of staff is also essential. To deal with this, employees must be cross-trained with responsibilities.
CommunicationThe communication strategy will take care of the communication between the business or organization in unlikely events. The beneficial strategy here will consist:
- Means or ways to contact government, emergency services, media, and employees' family members
- Different methods of communication while ensuring they are not reliable to each other (call, internet, email, text message)
- POC (Points of Contact). This will ensure smooth communication between the business and can be achieved with the help of human resources, team leaders, and managers.
BackupsThe final thing to take care of is backups. Backups can be life-saving in disruptive or unlikely events and could end up saving millions of dollars. In other words, having a backup for energy/electricity and data could save you a lot of trouble during and after the event.
Let’s look at what a backups plan should include:
- Data is to be stored in different locations as a backup.
- Different power sources
- Backup communication
Disaster recovery planThe disaster recovery plan is often referred to as the second line of defence in terms of a disruptive event. This is mainly defined by 2 different factors, including RTO (recovery time objective) and RPO (recovery point objective).
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RTO (recovery time objective)RTO means the maximum allowed time for the downtime of critical tasks. In other words, you can also say that the maximum acceptable time it should take to take all the computers, power, communication channels, etc. to take online. Based on the importance of different components, a separate RTO is assigned.
RPO (Recovery point objective)The maximum point or state of the component should be restored after the disruption. For example, servers should take a backup of data every 1 hour. This way, the most amount of data your company will lose is 59 minutes.
None of us could have predicted the market crash, cyberattacks, or an outbreak like Covid-19. However, with the help of modern technologies and great BCDR planning, organizations were able to handle that. Having a proper plan in place could end up saving any business millions of dollars or even more important resources.
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