June 1 marks the beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season for the United States, a time when communities have to evaluate emergency plans and prepare for possible storms. This is also a time when businesses have to evaluate their business continuity plans as well, according to a recent study by AT&T. Preparing for potential data loss, and the recovery of that data, gets easier each year though as technology and services improve.
According to the study, the number of businesses focused on improving their disaster recovery solutions rose 12 percent from 2011, and 86 percent of respondents already have a plan in place – an 8 percent increase over the past five years. Maintaining communications and operations during and after a disaster is key to not only maintaining revenue, but also assists the community by keeping jobs open and income going to families that may have been affected by storms.
The survey, which polled IT professionals from U.S. companies with an annual revenue over $25 million, also found that many businesses are investing in mobile, cloud, and security disaster recovery software to improve their continuity plans. However, simply having a plan in place is not enough. About two-thirds of respondents revealed that their business continuity plans have been fully tested in the past two years, while 71 percent take proactive measures whenever state or federal disaster warnings are issued.
In addition to having a plan and testing it, businesses need to have backup and recovery software that can handle the appropriate amount of data, and a backup schedule that minimizes data loss. By doing so, a company can not only be up and running as soon as possible if a disaster like a hurricane hits, but also reduce the data that is inevitably lost afterward to an acceptable amount.