For most clients, business continuity and disaster recovery planning begins with a risk assessment. In this phase, BC/DR associates visit your company's site, interview key facilities and operations staff, and perform a thorough walk-through of the site. The interview and walk-through are scored against a matrix that measures all possible operational, structural, employee-related and natural-hazard risks.
The next phase is the business and application value assessment. The BC/DR consultants compose a list of the company's major business processes and functions, broken down by business unit or department. Each process is graded in terms of financial, customer-perception and brand-impact values, each on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.
BC/DR associates collect all configuration and connectivity parameters for servers, appliances, network communication hardware and storage devices. Together, these are called configuration items (Cls) and are used in your company's IT operations. This data is mapped back to the B/AVA so that you'll know everything required to move or restore an application, as well as knowing the overall importance of each Cl. Process mapping creates a picture of each business process, and what would be needed to continue the process in the absence of any or all of its IT resources.
Once you know what you've got and where it lives, you need to know it's being backed up and how to recover it after an event. We will work with your IT staff to develop clear, concise, cost-contained backup and recovery solutions. This includes development of internal solutions; you recover to another location already owned by your company. It also includes site selection and provisioning of a second data center for high availability with automatic failover, plus contract negotiation with off-site backup providers, dropship equipment providers and hot-site recovery providers.
Having detailed, actionable plans in place prior to an event will help your company's operations get back up and running much faster than would otherwise be possible. Often business continuity and disaster recovery are intermingled and confused. Business continuity is what you do as an organization to help keep the business running while IT resources are unavailable in the aftermath of an event. Disaster recovery is the process of bringing those IT resources back into operation; incident management oversees both, and coordinates all aspects of keeping the business running while directing the total recovery effort.