Dr. Mark Smith recently published an article in the Lafayette Business Journal that made the staff at EDC stop and listen. As the UL Lafayette Associate Director of Business Strategy, he knows first hand what it takes to survive in the business world, and he had some startling statistics about disaster planning for business information. These are a few from that article:
– A company that experiences a computer outage lasting more thant 10 days will never fully recover. 50% will be out of business within five years.
– An estimated 25% of businesses do no reopen following a major disaster.
– 70% of small firms that experience a major data loss go out of business within a year.
– Of the companies that experience catastrophic data loss, 43% never reopened and 51% closed within two years.
Disaster plans should be made for 2 types of senarios:
Plan A : Recover from hardware failure or software corruption
This can happen due to a variety of reasons, so you should make sure you have up to date backups. Review your backup solution yearly to ensure that it is the best one for your needs, and that you are backing up the right information. Keeping receipts and warranty paperwork for equipment, and copies of disks and license keys in a safe place can also be of great aid in quickly recovering your network. EDC does not keep copies of your license keys and disks, and we don’t keep stock of every software our clients use. We can get you up and running much sooner with the proper tools.
Plan B: Evacuation Plan
We all know what would cause evacuations, but would you know how to run your business from a secondary location if you were unable to return to your office? Katrina showed us that sometimes you may not be able to go back to the office, but you still need to go back to work. A plan should be made for what would happen in such an event. This would include what would be taken, by whom, and how you would all meet after everyone has moved to a safe place.
I will use some of EDC’s plan as an example: Every consultant knows to leave with their laptop, and their cell phones, the accounting server and paper copies of client contact information is taken by Elise, and Scott leaves with all of the software required to do business. Scott also has a master list of contact information to get everyone back to work at a temporary location if needed.
In a bind, hardware can be purchased and shipped overnight to a new location, but the data and staff cannot be so easily replaced. This is just a general guide, if you have specific questions while making your disaster plans, please call us. We can help you make a plan that works specifically for your company. We hope to never have to use these precautions, but being caught without
them could mean the end of your business.
For more information about Dr.Mark Smith, and the articled referred to above, go to www.lafbusinessjournal.com