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Disaster Recovery: A More Reasonable Approach

Disaster Recovery: A More Reasonable Approach

I am sometimes frustrated by the dearth of good, solid, reliable statistics about backup and disaster recovery in the small to mid-sized business arena. There is some data, and it seems more and more is becoming available, but for the most part, statistics on disaster recovery are few and far between. I find that troubling because we’re in an IT environment where up-to-the-minute data and information is critical. Things are changing all the time. Customers need accurate, reliable information on which to base their decisions.

Unfortunately, what they usually get is this:

"30% of all businesses that have a major fire go out of business within a year. 70% fail within five years. (Home Office Computing Magazine)"
And this (on the same Web page, even):
"93% of companies that lost their data center for 10 days or more due to a disaster filed for bankruptcy within one year of the disaster. 50% of businesses that found themselves without data management for this same time period filed for bankruptcy immediately. (National Archives & Records Administration in Washington)
And this (still on the same page):
"Companies that aren't able to resume operations within ten days (of a disaster hit) are not likely to survive." (Strategic Research Institute)
Here we have on the same Web page, three separate versions of essentially the same statistic. But, you say, they’re slightly different and come from different places, so what’s the problem? First of all, if this one site (to which I bear no ill will) were the only place I’d run across this information, I wouldn’t be writing this post.

I’ve seen variations of this same statistic dozens of times across the Internet. Occasionally, as in the examples shown above, some effort is made to cite them, but usually the numbers are just thrown out there. And when citation is given, it’s always just the name of some organization. No date, no link, no way for discerning readers to verify the information.

But to be honest, the poor sourcing isn’t the problem. The problem is that these statistics are clearly chosen solely for their shock value. That’s why no one cares that they may be as much as fifteen years old and completely untraceable. The point is to scare people, to get them quaking in their boots, to get them to race out and buy disaster recovery before they become one of those businesses that dies.

I get it. We’ve all been there. But I think these days, there’s a better way to approach disaster recovery. IT is now literally a part of everything we do today and the conversation can be more about IT health rather than business death.

A solid backup and disaster recovery solution does more today than protect against the wrath of Mother Nature.  It enables a business to act with confidence, to grow with the surety that their success is built on a solid IT foundation. An executive that invests in backup and disaster recovery because he or she understands how it infuses their business with rock-solid IT infrastructure is much more likely to make disaster recovery a priority in the future than one who has simply purchased it out of fear.

At StorageCraft, we’ve just published a new white paper that explores some of these ideas of how to sell backup and disaster recovery from a positive perspective, but I’m interested in your thoughts. Have you had any success with a positive backup and disaster recovery approach or do we still need to rely on shock and awe?

Curt James is VP of marketing and business development at StorageCraft, which works closely with MSPs. Monthly guest blogs such as this one are part of MSPmentor’s annual platinum sponsorship. Read all of StorageCraft's guest blogs here.
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