How to Test your Disaster Recovery Plan

How to Test your Disaster Recovery Plan

It should not take an outage to compel your business to evaluate its business continuity and response strategy.  One should be in place long before disaster strikes.

 

 

Business Continuity PlanningThe beginning of the year is a good time to test your disaster recovery / business continuity plan. (And put one into place if you haven’t yet.)

DR/BC planning and testing doesn’t always make it to the top of a busy executive’s to-do list, yet it is essential to maintaining business operations. We suggest that businesses prioritize the elements of their DR plan based on business risks and focus redundancy on only those systems and processes that you cannot live without for even a short period of time. Then test it and test again in a truly useful way — a way that allows you to identify and resolve gaps but without minimum impact to operations?

The best plan will plot out a pragmatic, phased method that tests your DR/BC plan without doing any damage to the organization (or your reputation). Those phases need to align to the overall DR/BC plan as well as to the needs of the organization. The best time to do this is during planned maintenance.

What about those critical systems that are mission critical and can’t go down, even for planned maintenance? These systems should have built-in redundancy. You can, and should, test the redundant systems.  There is no need to shut down the entire network to test. Hook up a small portion of the organization to the redundant systems and test.

Our best advice: Be patient. When you first start testing your DR/BC plan and systems, it might get a little chaotic. An experienced network technology engineer can go a long way in making sure the implementation and testing go as smooth as possible.

Contact ACE IT Solutions at 646.558.6358 to discuss how we can help draft, implement and test a disaster recovery plan that meets your organization’s needs and budget.