Guest Column | January 23, 2017

4 Data Trends That Will Keep BDR Top Of Mind For Customers

BSM Matthew Held, Manawa Networks

By Matthew Held, CEO and Co-Founder, Manawa Networks and ASCII Group Member Since 2015

Data loss or theft is a fact of life for organizations of all sizes. We’ve come to expect hardware failure or human error and criminals targeting smaller organizations that spend less of IT security and disaster recovery. But recently, foreign hackers and criminals have upped the game, conducting serious cyber-attacks and wreaking havoc on organizations and governments.

For solution providers, several trends this year reveal why backup and disaster recovery should be top of mind for small, medium, and large businesses.

  1. Seek Expert Help To Follow Backup 3-2-1
    Most professionals know colleagues at organizations that have lost data. Organizations are quick to seek a remedy from experts after a security breach as they don’t have a DBR plan to safeguard their customer information.

Solution providers recommend their clients follow Backup 3-2-1, a rule requiring any piece of data exist on two different storage media with at least one being offsite. For example, if your business burns down, data that was last backed up at a remote location can be used to restore information. There are countless examples of organizations losing data because the backups were in the same location.

Organization need to take frequent, full, and incremental backups to reduce the time needed to restore files when data is lost and needs to be recovered quickly. At a minimum, backup everything weekly along with incremental backups to two physical backup devices with at least one being offsite. This includes phones, tablets, and cameras. But backing up data is only half the solution. The other half involves solution providers testing how fast large amounts of data can be restored to minimize the customer’s downtime.

  1. Cloud-Based Services Need Bullet Proof BDR
    As more and more companies adopt cloud services, they focus on core competencies. Cloud-based disaster recovery claims lower costs and faster and more flexible solutions for backing up a company’s data. Many cloud customers falsely believe they are covered with a comprehensive disaster recovery plan. This is not always true. Rather than put all your eggs in one basket and believe you are protected, a solution provider can test their customer’s BDR plan and time to restore data by simulating disaster scenarios.

The cost of cloud-based disaster recovery must also be estimated after identifying a cloud provider. The cost of using a cloud-based disaster recovery may include a monthly subscription fee, the amount of Internet bandwidth required, the amount of storage used, and the number of virtual machines or processors. Additionally, the effort and time to restore data from the cloud is an important consideration not often asked up front. Costs for additional needs can add up quickly if not regularly monitored and optimally configured, based on a plan.

  1. Help Design And Test Customer-Centric BDR Plans
    Many organizations have an incomplete disaster recovery plan, like covering backups only. An effectively disaster recovery plan requires the solution provider advise, collaborate, and design a customer-centric plan addressing their needs for the short- and long-term. For example, one client may not be allowed to put sensitive customer information in the cloud and instead will need a private cloud solution. Another customer will need a hybrid cloud storage solution, while a third is fine with a public cloud. Designing the best cloud architecture to fit a customer’s needs is necessary in order to create value and savings and, more importantly, win the customer’s long-term trust from C-Level executives. Solution providers that provide a step-by-step collaborative, consultative approach have more successful client outcomes.
  2. Educate In The Age Of Complexity
    In a perfect word, solutions are simple and easy to implement. But today, customization and complexity are the norm and no one customer is the same. Solution providers must think of every possible contingency and scenario their customers may have overlooked. Solution providers need to persuade different roles within an organization with different knowledge levels. For example, a C-level executive may believe they have a solid DBR plan, for which they are very prepared for any disaster. In the same company, the technical staff often believes the organization is not prepared because they have not invested adequately and not thought about all possible disaster contingencies.

BDR is a top-of-mind issue for C-level executives and technical professionals in their organizations in 2017. The news cycle will continue to publish serious cases of security data breaches. Negative financial results, fewer customers, and loss of reputation will continue to cripple organizations without solid BDR plans.

About The ASCII Group, Inc.
The ASCII Group is a vibrant reseller community of independent MSPs, VARs, and other solution providers. Formed in 1984, ASCII has more than 70 programs that provide turnkey cost-cutting strategies, innovative business building programs, and extensive peer interaction. ASCII members enjoy benefits such as marketing support; educational information; group purchasing power; increased leverage in the marketplace; and multiple networking opportunities. These programs enable ASCII members to increase revenue, lower operating costs, and grow service opportunities. ASCII is the oldest and largest group of independent information technology (IT) solution providers, integrators and value added resellers (VARs) in the world. Learn more at www.ascii.com.