Small businesses back up, but still aren’t prepared for disaster

Small businesses back up, but still aren’t prepared for disaster

June 19

According to a recent survey by Sage North America, 98 percent of companies in Canada utilize data backup software on a regular basis to keep business records safe. However, only 38 percent have developed a formal disaster recovery plan.

While these numbers are positive, improvements can be made. According to the survey, which polled 167 small businesses throughout Canada, only 28 percent of respondents store their backups off-site or in the cloud, while 72 percent keep their backup hard drives or servers on-site – at risk from a natural disaster or similar emergencies. Additionally, a mere 12 percent use the more reliable dual backup method of keeping a copy on-site and off-site. This method provides faster access to files but also includes the security that only off-site storage provides against theft, destruction, and other threats.

“Such loss could severely delay operations and hinder a full recovery,” said Nancy Harris, vice president and general manager at Sage Simply Accounting. “It’s important for small businesses to consider this in the development of any preparedness plan. It may seem insignificant now, but if that data is safe off-site when a crisis hits, the owner will be able to focus on getting their business up and running again instead of worrying about its survival.”

In addition to the need for improved disaster recovery planning, the survey found that 39 percent of businesses back up daily, while 20 percent do so “a few times a week.” Only 21 percent of respondents have a formal technology plan in place for their businesses.

Ultimately, this data reflects a general need for improved desktop and server backup strategies in businesses worldwide. Backing up data is not enough, as having a reliable and tested contingency plan in case of an emergency is needed to make that backup solution work.