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Are you part of the 28% that doesn’t test their disaster recovery plan?

You have a disaster recovery plan, and to the knowledge of management, it works. If something fails, are you sure recovery will be quick and painless?

Follow these 8 steps to ensure your disaster recovery plan is done right.

Step 1: Develop Recovery Point Objectives (RPOs) and Recovery Time Objectives (RTOs). This is often overlooked, and most organizations skip right on to step 2. If you don’t know your organizations RPOs and RTOs that are set by internal or external compliances, then you are the blind leading the blind. Your ERP system might require a 15-minute failover vs. a document folder that you can operate without for 24 hours. See how L’Oréal ensures reliable RTO and RPO with Veeam.

Step 2: Define mission-critical VMs. Regardless of the type of organization you are, there are always mission critical machines to maintain operations and keep core functions up and running. Preparing to re-establish critical operations will help reduce the impact of business interruption.

Step 3: Define Necessary Resources. You need to determine the amount of resources (CPU and RAM) and storage space required to operate mission-critical VMs. As simple as this may sound, it is a question we are often chasing customers for – if you are unsure how much mission critical data you have, we can help.

Step 4: Establish a disaster recovery checklist. This is where you would create a chronological task recovery list, where each recovery step would be assigned to specific company personnel.

Step 5: Document current backup methodologies. You should always have backup procedures in place. For example, if a disaster occurred today, your organization should be prepared to rely on a redundant backup. In this step, you would also identify any vulnerabilities, including intermittent backup procedures, machines not being backed up that should be or lack of off-site backup and failure to test and restore the backup.

Step 6: Create a schedule for updating the plan. An outdated plan is as good as no plan at all! Disaster recovery plans are most commonly tested semi-annually but can be tested as often as monthly or quarterly. Disaster recovery testing doesn’t have to be costly. The more often you test your DR plan, the less costly it can be!

Step 7: Measure and evaluate. What good is a plan if you never test it? Especially this plan, one that helps keep the doors of your organization open. Your cloud service provider should make it easy for you to test your DR service and should be able to provide useful feedback during and after this process.

Step 8: Update the plan! In order to ensure you have received the most out of your testing, document places where problems occurred and adjustments were made. Make any changes necessary to ensure a smoother disaster recovery test for next time, and compare the test results to internal requirements to see where there needs to be improvement. Learn more about addressing gaps in your disaster recovery plan.

Following a tried-and-true disaster recovery testing plan will ensure you are prepared in a disaster event.

Prepare for the unexpected. Learn more about testing your disaster recovery plan with our free eBook: Putting Disaster Recovery to the Test.