When is the last time that you tested your IT disaster recovery plan? Many businesses spend time and money implementing a disaster recovery plan but then don’t test it often enough or at all after it’s initial test. An untested disaster recovery plan could be as good as useless.
The reason why you should spend time testing your plan is so that you can know if something is wrong with it and that it will work when a real disaster actually happens. A disaster recovery test will tell you if you can rely on your plan to work if and when things do go wrong with your IT infrastructure or data and application services. Think about it like a fire drill; we do fire drills so that we can know what to do in case of fire. We also do drills so that we can find out whether the plan we have in place is effective in getting all people out safely in case of fire.
The same should go for your IT disaster recovery plan. Map out scenarios of things that can go wrong and then test your plan. Does it hold up?
What, for example, would happen if your server room got flooded? Do you have an alternative way to access data? What about if there is a fire? What in your plan ensures that your IT resources are back up as soon as possible?
One of the most common failures when it comes to disaster recovery tests is data backup and restore; your system is almost useless if you don’t have regular backups done. The backups that you make cannot afford to be kept in the same place as the data itself.
A good disaster recovery plan involves keeping back-up data off-site and making sure that it is updated often and it can be accessed easily in case you need it.
Get an expert in to do your disaster recovery plan for you and then make sure that you test it against as many scenarios as you think can happen at least every 3 months.