For many parts of the U.S., spring can be a treacherous time for weather. Budding trees and blooming flowers come to life alongside powerful thunderstorms, torrential flooding, and devastating tornadoes. Unfortunately, these disasters can be troublesome for businesses, especially when it comes to technology. Flooding, power outages, and power surges can cause severe technology interruptions and total losses.
According to the Washington Post, natural disasters caused approximately $155 billion worth of damage in 2018. Along the same lines, data continues to be one of the most valuable resources. Some would argue that it’s even more valuable than oil. If your business makes the right preparations before a disaster strikes, you can minimize the risk of potential data loss. In addition, you can ensure you’ll be able to maintain contact with customers if an emergency occurs.
Is your business prepared in case of a data disaster? Here, we’ll illustrate some technology tips to help you get started.
Back Up Your Data
Disasters can occur at any time. Severe events seem to occur at the most inconvenient times—just after you completed a company-wide hardware upgrade, at 2:30 in the morning, or on a Sunday evening when your favorite show is on TV. To prepare your business, make sure you have a working data backup plan in place. High Touch recommends taking the following steps:
Determine Data Storage Needs
When is the last time you’ve evaluated your data storage requirements? As data becomes increasingly valuable for business operations, verify you haven’t outgrown your data needs. You want to assure all your essential data is safe, not just bits and pieces.
Schedule Regular Data Backups
Does it look like rough weather is coming your way? Schedule your automatic file backups to occur more regularly if you’re experiencing a stretch of disaster-prone weather. This will help you minimize any potential data loss that could occur.
Implement a Cloud-Based Data Backup
If you can back up your data in a secure cloud backup solution, you can prevent data loss if something happens to your physical business location. This will help save your data in the event that a disaster ruins your business’s hardware.
Create a Local Data Backup
Cloud backup solutions are great, but even large-scale data centers can succumb to sudden failures. Create a local backup of your essential data, and keep a copy in a secure secondary location.
Test Data Backups
A worst-case scenario happens immediately after a disaster occurs. Picture this: you think you’ve protected your data, but since you didn’t test it beforehand, you discover the backup hasn’t been updated in over a year and you’re missing a ton of important files. Remember to test your backups regularly, especially if you’re in a dangerous weather pattern.
Prepare Your Phone System
If a disaster strikes, will you be able to contact your employees and customers? Did you upload your entire directory to an online database? Maybe, you’ve only saved the data on a local workstation—that’s not good. If a disaster strikes, you still need a way to stay in contact with your employees and customers. With knowledgeable phone system preparation, you can maintain business operations, even if a disaster wipes out your phone system.
First, implement and update your call forwarding. Is there an after-hours emergency contact that can receive forwarded calls? Does your office phone forward calls to your mobile device as a backup during emergencies? In addition, you need to create a list of emergency contacts to have on hand. This should include essential employees, vendors, and clients you would need to contact to communicate business-related disaster information.
To prepare your phone system for disasters, you should also record a special on-hold message. This will allow you to alert customers of any potential disaster-related delays in case your phone system goes down. In the end, having a plan and sticking to it, is the biggest component of prepping your phone system for a disaster.
Create a Disaster Recovery Plan
The most important part for protecting your business and its data from a disaster is having a solid plan in place. Part of this plan requires that you have data backup and phone system preparations in place. It’s also important that you develop an emergency response plan and designate responsible parties in the event of complete data failure. Communication is key to maintaining your business and getting it back up and running. If you have a plan in place, you’ll be prepared for any data disasters that happen, including natural disasters, cyberattacks, hardware failure, corrupted files, theft, and human error.
We Keep Your Business Safe.
High Touch has the knowledge, tools, and experience to help your business prevent a data disaster with Data Backup and Recovery, Phone Systems, and Consulting services. To request more information or learn more about our Data Backup and Recovery solutions:Get in Touch