September 24th 2014
understanding disaster

We all know that equipment and system failures can cause serious damage to businesses. We also know that downtimes are more common than most people think…and, while the costs are difficult to gauge accurately, studies have suggested they could actually cost as much as £16.1bn in lost revenues each year.

Much of your efforts may be invested into preventing these events, but – perhaps even more importantly than this – how prepared would you be to recover from any damage if the worst happened?

Understanding the costs
At the risk of pointing out the obvious, when your systems are down, your business is losing money. It’s damaging your reputation, hurting your productivity and stopping you from generating revenue. And, it goes without saying, that the damage done by lost company data can cause huge problems.

It’s difficult to quantify the full costs of the damage caused by IT failures, but a 2012 Ponemon Study into disaster recovery turned up some interesting figures.

The study found that most downtimes have a reported average length of 86 minutes, costing £420,000; and that total data centre outages averaged at 119 minutes, and costed approximately £550,000

TechRadar, meanwhile, have noted that for 80 percent of small and mid-sized businesses, downtime costs at least £12,000 an hour. The very fact that this price is broken down into a ‘per hour’ figure hints at an important truth: every hour that your systems are down, is an hour of pain for your business. You need to recover, and recover fast.

Repairing the damage
So unplanned outages are a big deal to your business and can be incredibly expensive. And yet, incredibly, many businesses take the attitude that it’ll never happen to them, and fail to put appropriate plans in place. Amazingly„ 56% of enterprises in North America and 30% in Europe don’t have a good disaster recovery plan.

This leads to a situation where, although average downtime length is around the two hour mark, organizations can take as long as two days to recover from them. Two full days! This surprising statistic underscores how damaging IT failures can be, and how underprepared businesses can be to recover from them.

What’s the solution?
So, with these frightening stats in mind, your contingency plan might be to turn to traditional backup and data recovery solutions – external hard drives, tape backups and network drives etc.

Unfortunately, all too often, these solutions are found to be wanting primarily due to the amount of time it takes to rebuild a server then restore the data which will normally be from the previous day. Another common issue is the limited amount of backups available when a restore is needed because of insufficient backup space. This is particularly important regarding some viruses which operate by encrypting files and folders that can take some time for users to realise what has happened and if there isn’t an old enough backup available the files might not be retrievable.

The Lloyds Approach
Here at Lloyds, we take a different approach to disaster recovery. Our solutions include various features such as excellent retention of data allowing restores from up to 1 year and hourly image based backups which replicate on your network and also to our datacentre. This means the images can be ‘turned on’ using virtualisation on different hardware either on your network or ours and means you’re back up and running not within two days, but within the hour.

Get in touch
To find out more about our Disaster Recovery Solutions and how we can safeguard your business against these events, why not get in touch?