It's easy to get lost somewhere on the journey to manage business continuity and disaster recovery plans effectively. The key trouble spot for most organizations is effectively differentiating between the two practices. Luckily, Disaster-Recovery-as-a-Service solutions and cloud infrastructure services are coming together to make it easier to deal with both continuity and recovery issues. Before we get into the way that cloud solutions can meet continuity and recovery needs, let's look at the key distinctions between the two strategies.
Business continuity vs. disaster recovery
There are some core similarities between business continuity and disaster recovery, as they both are put into action to protect your organization in the event of an emergency. However, they have distinct purposes, so it's important to understand how they are different.
Business continuity: A business continuity strategy is focused on identifying critical systems and ensuring they remain available regardless of the emergency facing an organization. For example, if a hurricane is coming, there are certain systems that need to remain available to keep the business solvent. The goal is to ensure downtime does not occur at all among critical systems, and the focus is usually on redundancy and secondary operational strategies that can be put into place during an emergency.
Disaster recovery: A disaster recovery plan is designed as a response to an outage. When downtime does occur, systems and data need to be made available as quickly as possible, and a good recovery strategy accomplishes that.
A successful emergency response hinges on having strategies for both continuity and recovery to minimize damages. Cloud backup, DRaaS and Infrastructure-as-a-Service solutions can play a key role in meeting both of these needs.
Using the cloud to support continuity and recovery
An IaaS strategy, particularly enterprise cloud solutions, can be used to support mission critical systems. This gives organizations a reliable, resilient infrastructure with high enough availability to be used as a component of business continuity plans. On top of that, a DRaaS plan with cloud backup features ensures that your data and infrastructure is safe if an outage occurs. Most DRaaS plans feature automatic switch-over functionality that identifies when primary systems are unavailable and ensures a smooth transition to backup solutions.
When combined, a fully-featured private cloud IaaS solution combined with DRaaS and cloud backup can meet all of your continuity and recovery needs.