Secure your Remote Desktop Protocol RDP with Managed IT Support protection.

How to Devise a Budget that includes your Disaster Recovery Plans

Planning and disaster recovery, more importantly, budgeting, is one of those tasks few business continuity managers look forward to completing every year. After all, it can become a pretty involved, and complicated processes for anyone, often seen as sobering to tally-up the final bill. Love-it or hate-it, devising a business disaster recovery (BDR) budget is a necessary evil which nobody can avoid. On the bright side, there are some simple steps you can take to ensure you spend wisely on a disaster recovery budget.

Rally the Troops

Call in the troops with a rallying cry for disaster recovery to protect the entire organization. By design, planning and budgeting should involve the CEO, or top-level management, and department leaders across the company — not only IT. Key members from varying departments like sales and customer service can drive budgeting needs by contributing valuable insights on how systems and resources are used, performing, and the maintenance needed. Business owners and CIOs can see what the plan entails, and decide how to best execute the proposed strategies while staying within the budget.

Know What’s Important

After you’ve rallied the troops and the advocates, your next step would be to focus the bulk of your disaster recovery planning efforts around your most precious asset. For most, business begins and ends with data. Data can be perceived as analytical, or informational bits and bytes that make up the information that runs your business.

Commonly, these budgets should be structured in a way, to cover vital company information from various angles. An example of this can be found at some level of most businesses. The entire organization uses a firewall(s), to ward off network attacks at the perimeter level. Anti-virus and end-point protection halt threats on production servers or prevent data encryption. Although the equipment varies from one company to another, but eventually technology breaks. Having an on-site, and an off-site backup plan will ensure that your business line data can be recovered fully, and reliably.

Business Risk Weigh-out

Now it’s time to hone in on actual disastrous scenarios. This is when your staff can assist in identifying the biggest threats to your business. Begin to engineer strategies to minimize the exposure and risks to data. Your hardware and data’s physical location is always a factor, but most organizations should thoroughly plan for both natural and accidental disasters. Although you might have prepared a comeback from fire or flood, have you given thought to disgruntled employees? What about cybercriminals, and hacking?

From here, we can begin working on a budget that properly reflects, the tools and resources needed to put your strategy in place. Our managed service partners have the freedom to budget in anything from training internal-staff in advanced cybersecurity measures to our network monitoring process. Your budget must cover the workforce needed to spring into action during these disaster recovery scenarios.

Prioritize Your Assets

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in disaster recovery planning is treating each system and process as equals. Why? Because it often leads to employing “grade-A” protection across your infrastructure. Not quite sure where your resources rank in the pecking order? Well, this is where a detailed business impact analysis (BIA) comes in handy. A BIA will identify each resource in your environment. It will also help drive your budgeting efforts based on their order of importance.

Fund Your Budget Wisely

Smart budgeting is about setting your limits and staying within those very boundaries. Your ability to stay within that safe zone will largely depend on your organizational structure, but some companies are already allocating a sizable portion of their budget towards disaster recovery services. Typically, we see those that operate disaster recovery as its own separate line-item, taking a more targeted approach for every department.

Your Peace-of-Mind

Unfortunately, things don’t always go according to plan. Failed backups or lapses in communication, these roadblocks can lead to stumbling over the hurdles to recovery. Your disaster recovery can be seen as an ongoing process, without a time constraint, you can periodically test your solutions along the way.

If your company is struggling to get over any of the hurdles on the road to successful disaster recovery, contact us to begin a no-cost, no-obligation conversation with one of our friendly staff members.

Tech or Treat: How Tech Budgets Will Turn Your Business Around

It only takes one outage to showcase how vulnerable a company could be. Unfortunately for most businesses, this single incident can shake business owners to their core. In just a matter of moments, your business’ reputation, and public standing is called into question. The greatest example of this would be Equifax’s security breach, where they lost control of business grade data due to outdated security practices, and aging infrastructure provided the perfect storm for hackers to come in and destroy the reputation, of their business. By creating a technology budget, your business can get the leg up on hackers, and your competition.

Last year we posted a blog article about keeping technology updated, using budgeting tactics to focus on such things as infrastructure, aging equipment, and Section 179 Tax Breaks. (Article found here: http://www.clarecomputer.com/resources/blog/budget-tips-for-better-success/) With Section 179 still active for most Bay Area business owners, it’s no wonder so many have begun projects for next year.

Sometimes, companies find themselves with challenges they know could be met, if they replaced or upgraded aging IT systems. The challenge for most is knowing where to begin. Often, the expense keeps many in a pattern of “band-aid” fixes and crisis management.

Clare Computer Solutions has helped hundreds of companies get over this hurdle. Utilizing assessment tools and highly-skilled staff, to locate any issues and determining the remedy to your most critical pain-points first. Part of this process is strategic in nature. Making recommendations for technology, it’s imperative to know what the goals of the business are. Devising a plan to ensure the IT infrastructure will support reaching those goals.

After identifying our plans, we outline a budget proposal, to spread expenses across several mini-projects a year. With this approach, we concentrate on addressing your most immediate business needs. We can then present a clear picture of what needs to be done, spelled out in a phased approach, enabling your company to make necessary operational improvements at a moment’s notice.

When adopting the practice of a strategic budget every year, it makes technology an integral part of business planning. Making IT issues less common, and keeping costs under control.

This is the perfect time of year for you to be thinking about your company’s goals and plans for next year. The perfect time to devise an information technology budget to ensure your company with the technology it will need to achieve those goals.

Contact Clare Computer Solutions now to begin planning your information technology budget.