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When Should You Update Your Disaster Recovery Plan

You never know when disaster will strike.

Wise companies will plan for disasters to the best of their ability and have a recovery plan in place should something unfortunate occur. But while creating and implementing a recovery plan is important, some companies fail to keep their plans up to date.

How often should you update your recovery plan? Given that you are planning for the safety of your business, it’s only prudent to update once a year at the very minimum. It is preferable to do it quarterly if at all possible. Your business literally depends on your recovery plan when a disaster comes to pass.

Even then, don’t relax thinking that having created a plan, you are safe. You need to test your plan to find any potential weak spots, and you need to ensure that all of your employees are aware of their individual roles in the event that the plan must be put into effect.

Although quarterly updates are recommended, exactly how often you choose to test and update is dependant on a number of factors. For example, is your business primarily an online one? Do you store customer data on the cloud? How often does your staff change? If you have a high employee turnover, you will want to review your plan more often and make instruction on recovery a part of every new employee’s training.

To test your plan, create a scenario and assign each employee a role to play in the recovery. Have them carry out their tasks and then evaluate their effectiveness. This will allow you to see where you need to make improvements and adjustments.

Cloud data is a great way to safeguard your information and carries a variety of benefits, but your recovery plan must address more than simply storing the data; after a disaster, you will still need to recover the data. You will need to know how and where to recover your information, and how to restore everything as quickly as possible so as not to leave your business in limbo longer than absolutely necessary.

Prioritize the applications that are most vital to the functioning of your business so that you know the order in which they must be restored. This list should be reviewed with each update of your recovery plan. Given that technology evolves over time, your recovery plan may need to change along with it, and the focus of your recovery effort may change.

One great option that you should consider is outsourcing your IT needs. A professional managed service provider will be of great assistance in creating and testing an effective recovery plan. They will also be able to maintain, update, and test your plan as necessary, saving you valuable time that can be better spent seeing to other aspects of your business.

Trust a professional to take care of your disaster recovery plan.  After all, your business may literally depend on it one day.