Let’s stop talking technical for a moment. Although the quality of IT disaster recovery depends on which technologies are used and how, we sometimes fall into the trap of assuming that innovation and specifications are all we need to optimise DR for our business. Cloud services are a case in point. Yet taking a moment to understand the business impact (whatever that impact is) is essential if you want to make sure that not only are you doing things right, but that you are also doing the right things.
What business benefits do enterprises usually look for? The basic ones include reducing costs, speeding up operations and increasing customer satisfaction. So how does IT disaster recovery via the cloud stack up in comparison?
- Cost reduction. Instead of forking out a large lump of money each time you need a new computer to ensure sufficient disaster recovery, with a cloud solution you pay only for the fraction of the resources you really need. The same reasoning applies to maintenance, support and personnel costs.
- Faster operations. Unlike tape backup and archiving, moving data to security in the cloud is done at the click of a mouse – idem for getting that data back again. You still need to make sure that your cloud network connection and the service are both fast enough, but it’s certainly worth a comparison with a courier trying to bring you backup tapes through rush hour traffic.
- More customer satisfaction. Cloud disaster recovery solutions have a further advantage: their cost-effectiveness means you can improve DR for all of your applications, instead of having to restrict it to a “mission-critical” list. Sometimes even the availability of a simple information webpage can have a positive impact on customer satisfaction.
Whether or not the cloud is right for your IT disaster recovery needs may also depend on other factors, but a common sense business approach will improve your assessment of the different solutions available.