When it comes to business continuity planning—an essential process every business should undertake—recovery objectives are two of your most important metrics. While your recovery time objective (RTO) answers the question “how long can our systems be down?” a recovery point objective (RPO) answers the question “how much data can we afford to lose?” Setting these objectives is relatively straightforward. Achieving them can be a different story. With so many options for achieving your RPO and RTO objectives, where do you begin? Start by understanding which solutions provide the most cost-effective countermeasures to combat both downtime and data loss. These days, no business continuity solution can be completely effective without cloud backups. Here are four ways cloud technologies can ensure that your business continuity strategy succeeds.
1. Advanced Customization
Every business has unique recovery objectives. That’s why one of the most important features of cloud backup solutions is customization. You should be able to easily adjust backup retention policies and the backup frequency in order to hit your RTO and RPO. To truly be flexible, these solutions should allow you to set policies on a per-machine or per-location basis. That ensures that every piece of equipment gets the proper attention, whether it’s a critical database server or a remote worker’s laptop.
2. Solid Backups and Layered Redundancy
Data protection starts with a rock-solid backup. But a single, local backup isn’t an effective approach for meeting your recovery objectives. What if the device storing your only backup fails? Instead, consider adopting StorageCraft’s new take on the traditional 3-2-1 backup rule. Using this approach, you keep at least three copies of your data: Store one copy locally; one copy offsite and unconnected to your network, and one additional copy in the cloud, preferably one that’s purpose-built for recovery like the StorageCraft Cloud Services cloud.
3. Advanced Network Recovery Options
Downtime can cost a business thousands of dollars in lost productivity, not to mention the cost of a damaged reputation. If a system or network goes down, the clock starts to tick as money slips down the drain. Cloud backup and recovery solutions are unique because they offer you the ability to instantly recover systems as virtual machines directly in the cloud in seconds. No matter what happens onsite, you have a failover option ready to take over, instantly. With the high cost of downtime, businesses should consider a network-wide failover option. It may be the most important investment your business makes.
4. Rigorous Backup and Recovery Testing
Corrupt or failed backups are useless. While it’s crucial for admins to monitor backups to ensure that they’re taken successfully, that’s not enough. You should also be testing backups regularly to make sure they’re fully recoverable. Using a cloud-based recovery solution, it’s easy to test whether a backup is functional by spinning it up as a virtual machine. This helps admins instantly validate that backups can be used for failover when the time comes.
There are many choices when it comes to cloud backups. As you evaluate them, test a few to see how easy they are to use. More sophisticated solutions will let you tackle just about every backup and recovery task remotely using a cloud-based dashboard. Whether you’re rolling out backup agents to remote employees’ machine, or even recovering a full network, you should be able to do it all, no matter where you are. That’s the real power of cloud backup.
If you’re looking for a solution that’s as powerful as it is easy to use, consider StorageCraft Cloud Services. It’s an effective way for enterprises to meet even the most aggressive recovery objectives.