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Business continuity is just one of the key IT terms you’ll hear as you navigate the latest shifts in the business world. There are many threats to your business, including natural disasters, cyber attacks, and devastating systems failures – especially as cyber attacks targeting remote work employees increase. Verizon’s 2022 Mobile Security Index revealed that 45% of organizations suffered a compromise involving mobile devices, including smartphones, tablets, and laptops, in the past 12 months.1
The cloud plays a big role in helping many companies ensure business continuity in case of disaster. According to the Business Continuity Institute (BCI), 50% of interviewees use the cloud for disaster recovery or moving on-premise workloads to the cloud, in addition to planning for the cloud’s role in data protection to increase.2 Here’s what you need to know about how the cloud works to bolster your business continuity plan:
If your business experiences a disaster, you may need a disaster recovery plan – but you also may have a business continuity problem. Business continuity is often thought to be the same thing as disaster recovery, but they are two different problems.
Assume that your main database shuts down. You need a disaster recovery plan to get your systems back online before your employees lose their minds trying to explain to customers why they can’t check their order status.
Now, assume that a tornado’s path runs right through your offices. You have no office, no telephones, no computer systems. In effect, you have no way to keep your business in operation. That’s when a business continuity plan is critical. Thinking about the aftermath of that tornado, you may believe that you’d just need to close your business while you recover. But, with a cloud-based system, you’ll be ready when a disaster strikes.
Do you know if your business is prepared to face any disaster? Navigate through our free checklist to see if your disaster recovery plan covers all the bases – or if you could benefit from speaking with an expert to create a customized solution that ensures business continuity no matter what the future brings.
A business continuity plan ensures your business can operate without interruption. To do that, you need access to your systems. For example, your customer service representatives need access to the order system, and your salespeople need to access their CRM. If all your business systems are on premises, a tornado can eliminate your ability to get things done.
But, as we are all well-aware – especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic – many of your employees don’t need to be in the office to do their jobs. If they have access to a cloud-based system, business can carry on as usual. Here are just some of the advantages of combining the cloud and business continuity:
Reaching the cloud is easy, no matter where your employees are located. You can structure your cloud services to meet your unique business needs – and provide your remote work teams with the access they need to get their jobs done from anywhere.
Once your on-premise systems are back up and running, the cloud makes restoring and recovering any lost data easy. And, if you’re facing a long recovery period for your own facilities, your cloud provider can replicate files to a different location and ensure your hybrid and remote work employees have access to necessary data.
Traditionally, business continuity plans are expensive, requiring the capacity to support all of your organization’s data. Those plans often call for costly remote production centers. When the cloud is involved, you can pick and choose the most critical capabilities to recreate elsewhere until your facilities are available.
Cloud-based data backup is highly reliable and a necessity for companies supporting hybrid and remote work arrangements. Additionally, it can be scheduled outside of normal business hours to avoid interrupting your operations.
Cloud providers are experts at keeping their systems operating, and the chance of a backup failure or data loss is exceptionally low. They’re also in a position to use the latest cyber security practices, which are often better than those you can implement yourself.
If you operate in a regulated industry such as finance or healthcare, you need to comply with data security regulations. Cloud providers are bound by the same regulations, relieving you of the burden of ensuring your business and your remote work initiatives remain compliant.
Ensuring business continuity requires a well-designed plan that takes time to create and keep up to date. A plan that sits on the shelf for years won’t work when a disaster does strike. So, the question is often, “Why should I bother?”
Think of a business continuity plan as insurance. You don’t expect your office to burn to the ground, but you should have insurance to rebuild if it does. In the same vein, you don’t expect to lose access to your network or critical business data due to a cyber attack, but you should have a business continuity plan to minimize downtime and quickly resume operations.
If a disaster impacts your operations, it can prevent you from making money, supporting your employees, and maintaining contact with your prospects and clients. 40% of small businesses don’t survive a disaster,3 but having an effective business continuity plan in place can help you reduce the chances of your business becoming just another statistic.
If you don’t have a current business continuity plan, Access One can help you. We’ll prepare you to avoid shutting your doors after a disaster with cloud and business continuity. For more information, contact us, or learn more about our business continuity services.