Disaster Recovery

What do you do when your computer systems stop working?

Data loss can have a significant negative impact on a business’s bottom line. Losing critical business information and other valuable data can result in substantial costs for companies as well as a potential loss of customer trust and brand reputation, and also result in your business being unable to make sales or invoice customers. Reliable cash flow depends on business continuity, which relies on critical and non-critical data being readily available. However, knowing Disaster Recovery is necessary and implementing it effectively are two separate things, this is where we come in.

A Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP) helps limit the disruption to your business and protect you from the effects of significant negative events. These can include anything from crippling cyberattacks and equipment failures through to natural disasters such as earthquakes. Just as one of these events makes the continuation of normal functions impossible, a DRP consists of the actions intended to minimise the negative effects of a disaster and allow you to maintain or quickly resume mission-critical functions. Computer Culture can work with you in creating a DRP and relieve the stress of understanding exactly what needs to be implemented to safeguard your business in the event of a disaster.

However, disaster recovery will not work properly without an appropriate backup plan. Backup and disaster recovery planning, implementation, and regular testing are essential for business survival.

Be stress free knowing you have a vital part of business continuity and strategic planning taken care of!

Case Study

In January 2011 Redesign had just scooped the Champion Canterbury award for best small enterprise global operator in 2010. The group operated from the seventh floor of a building on Hereford Street, neighbouring the Grand Chancellor hotel, within the CBD. Eight persons were employed at this office.

At 12.51pm, on Tuesday February 22nd the team experienced the full brunt and impact of a 6.3 magnitude earthquake with the building shaking violently. The building held structurally and was immediately evacuated. Within hours the entire area was locked down and designated as the red zone.

Within twenty-fours hours the unique business challenges presented by these events became increasing clear.

Customer’s Business Challenge

The companies existing IT infrastructure was inaccessible. With zero access permitted within the red zone it would be a matter of weeks before the company was granted temporary access to retrieve their equipment.

Within twenty-four hours most staff had dispersed, many leaving Canterbury to avoid the impact of the continuing aftershocks. With limited access to email and computers, where possible, the team initially worked off their personal emails and mobile devices.

Online communications with the company’s other offices in Saudi Arabia, India and Vietnam became disrupted. They no longer had access to the company’s main server, drawings and records and were also without email access.

The Solution

Computer Culture completed an immediate assessment and arranged cloud-based email for all employees on their own server in the very short term and then on a temporary server.

The immediate priority was to re-establish email communications with Redesign’s other global offices. This would enable the Christchurch team to load balance and distribute work in progress to their other offices.

Once email communication had been re-established, Computer Culture worked together with Redesign to develop a recovery and IT Infrastructure plan for the coming thirty-six months. Both invested time into scoping out the basic requirements and explored what value added services could be delivered.

In April, the firm was finally granted temporary access to their office and had time to recover their server.
Computer Culture recommended a managed service/cloud model. The group’s email was seamlessly migrated to Office 365 across their four global offices.

Redesign used CAD software to develop architectural and design drawings. These large files were managed on their existing small business server. Computer Culture transitioned the back up procedure, from tape to cloud, using ShadowProtect and image based backup, which can be used to complete a bare metal restore.

Back ups are managed by Keep It Safe and are used to complete a virtual boot, ensuring greater continuity of service in a disaster situation.

Results

Reduced Capital Expenditure & Costs

  • At a time of great uncertainty the transition to a cloud-based solution necessitated negligible up front investment for Redesign. The company can now scale their IT infrastructure as needed, up or down. Office 365 delivered the flexibility needed at this time.  Redesign has since more than doubled in size and now employs twenty-two persons across four offices.

Reduced Risk – Disaster Recovery

  • The Canterbury earthquakes instantly highlighted the benefits of a cloud-based solution to SMEs within the region. Microsoft’s offshore primary and secondary data centres located in seismically safe zones within the region added an extra layer of security and peace of mind for Redesign.

Improved Accessibility

  • Using Office 365, Redesign now have web enabled access to email, documents, marketing assets, contacts and calendars on almost any device, including smart phones and tablets. The team often works on location and this improved accessibility delivered further efficiencies.

Improved Collaboration

  • Office 365 delivered improved collaboration for Redesign, enabling them to easily share assets and keep their teams synchronised. Redesign is now able to load balance work in progress and push work between their global offices. Office 365 delivered the tools they needed to better manage production spikes and bottlenecks.

Improved Communications

  • Redesign now uses a combination of Skype and Lync, which has created efficiencies and reduced time and travel costs by hosting online meetings.  Instant messaging, one click screen sharing and the ability to mark up notes and minutes, in real time, created a user-friendly virtual meeting environment.

Reduced Telecommunications Costs

  • PC-to-PC calling and messaging has resulted in reduced telecommunications costs.

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