There are a variety of reasons businesses either do not have a disaster recovery plan or their current plan is substandard.  The beliefs of the people in charge of developing these processes (business owners and IT department) play a significant role in how effective the overall strategy will be.  This is problematic when the decision-makers have bought into one or more of the common myths surrounding disaster recovery.

Myth – Disaster Recovery is Expensive and Resource Intensive

One of the biggest reasons businesses put off developing a disaster recovery strategy is because they believe it will become too expensive and resource intensive.  As a result, they view it as more of a luxury than a necessity.  The truth is as technology continues to evolve; the costs associated with disaster recovery continue to fall.  Virtualization, standardization, and automation have all played key roles in making disaster recovery more affordable.  They have reduced the number of people required to restore systems which significantly decreases personnel costs.  In fact, a streamlined disaster recovery strategy can require only one person.  Virtualization also reduces the initial capital investment because redundant physical infrastructure is no longer necessary.

Myth – After Planning, There is No Way to Accurately Run a Test

Many businesses suffer from an ineffective disaster recovery plan and don’t even realize it.  This is because they do not believe a full-scale test is possible without significantly disrupting day-to-day activities.  Virtualization allows recovery plans to be tested against significant failures multiple times to ensure the plan is consistently effective, without disrupting day-to-day activities.  Not only are tests easy to run, but virtualization also eliminates the need to transport the IT team to multiple locations.

Myth – Creating and Managing a Disaster Recovery Solution Requires “Special” Skills

A common hesitation, especially among small businesses, is the belief that developing a disaster recovery solution requires a special set of skills.  This myth largely stems from traditional manual data recovery because end-users had to deal with duplicate, silent infrastructures across multiple sites.  Virtualization standardizes the disaster recovery process by encapsulating operating systems, applications, and servers.  This includes all the configuration data.  As a result, the entire process is now much less complex than it used to be.  Additionally, once the solution is in place it can be reliably tested and executed by staff.  Since this is all taken care of via automated processes, no special skills are required.

Myth – Disaster Recovery Plans Are like an Insurance Policy that Never Gets Used

The most common myths which prevent businesses from taking disaster recovery seriously are that it is unnecessary.  They believe disaster recovery is a sunk cost similar to a car insurance policy of someone who never gets an accident.  Even if a disaster never happens, the recovery plan still provides a variety of benefits to the business.  One of the most common uses is as a migration plan template anytime a business switches data centers.  Depending upon the industry, disaster recovery plans may also be a compliance requirement. In order to accurately assess the need for a new or improved disaster recovery plan these myths must be eliminated from a business’s belief structure.  As long as these myths remain, the odds of successfully implementing an efficient disaster recovery strategy are slim. Tony Spinks believes every company should consider using Disaster recovery services.  These services are critical for keeping businesses running after system failures.  Data Centers offering disaster recovery services provide the redundancy.