Keeping the business going
Johan Scheepers delves into how business continuity can be ensured through securing data recovery readiness
Achieving business continuity has become a primary concern for CIOs across all sectors in recent years. As one of the key foundations of any organisation or business, data has become a fundamental asset defined by increasingly integrated and complex data environments. Business continuity therefore necessitates the guarantee that data will flow regardless of disruptive events, unforeseen outages or exponential data expansion.
Today, corporations face multiple challenges in the form of remote sites, multi-cloud infrastructures and BYOD requirements produced by employees. Effective data protection and recovery has therefore become required assets in order to secure seamless business continuity.
Stores of data are rapidly overwhelming businesses due to the onset of Big Data, cloud computing, social media, and the Internet of Things. Most enterprises encounter challenges in trying to provide enough storage capacity to house this data. Alongside this fact, many business leaders have observed that the old selection of point products for data management is unable to leverage current data volumes.
A modern approach to data storage is therefore required, encompassing backup automation, disk and flash over tape, the elimination of redundant data snapshotting, virtualisation, software-defined storage and hybrid architectures. The solution lies in a single common platform designed to unify, centralise and simplify Disaster Recovery.
In addition to handling large volumes of data, a single unified platform is also required in order to lower the costs involved in managing extensive information storage. IDC has placed the amount of digital data in existence at the end of 2013 at 4.4 ZB, and predicts that the quantity of digital data will increase tenfold within five years, reaching 44 ZB by 2020. This stems as a result of Big Data, the cloud, mobile smartphones, social media and the Internet of Things (IoT). IDC predict that governments and businesses in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) will invest over $6.6 billion in IoT hardware, software, services and connectivity by the end of the year.
Tasked with ensuring that disparate systems and platforms of data continue to operate without interruption on a continuous basis, IT departments across all sectors are pressured to deliver under the threat of heightened costs brought on by downtime.
According to IDC, the average cost of downtime ranges from $100,000 per hour to $1.6 million per hour for some organisations. Many organisations can experience 10 to 20 hours of unplanned downtime per year, not factoring in a potential disaster. This means that few organisations can afford to be without a proper platform for disaster recovery in place.
A thorough approach to disaster recovery is necessary in order to ensure business continuity in the event of system failure or error. This approach begins with identifying the locations used to store all relevant data for your business, as these locations will often range from off-site tapes, to local storage sites, virtualised environments and private, public or hybrid cloud environments.
The sheer number of storage options therefore necessitates a data recovery solution that can offer a streamlined connection between multiple data siloes, in order to provide employees with an efficient recovery transition that will secure continuity for your organisation.
Following the identification of storage facilities within your business, the fundamental factor to ensuring a smooth recovery process is the implementation of a modern, comprehensive and adaptable method of data backup. Ever-shrinking recovering time objectives (RTOs) for critical applications such as email and CRM have introduced new demand for increasingly fast and efficient methods of data recovery. Prior to considerations regarding cross site recovery strategies, the solution must be able to meet the increasingly tight recovery time objectives found in modern organisations. All of these requirements must then fit under your operational budget and help you to control costs within an increasingly competitive business environment.
These are high priorities that occupy executives across all sectors, and in businesses of all sizes: from one-site firms to multi-national enterprises entailing multiple remote locations. With advanced technology continuously being applied to current recovery solutions, it is now possible to execute an efficient disaster recovery that will secure continuity for your business while meeting the constraints of your budget.
Not many solutions can tackle the challenges present across diverse data siloes, multiple storage sites and applications. Even fewer solutions can balance the cost of downtime with contemporary business requirements, utilising effective organisational collaboration and offering a comprehensive understanding of recovery metrics (RTO/RPO) as well as the tools available within the industry.
Commvault is the one solution that can secure your information regardless of its stored location, providing data protection and rapid data recovery across multiple siloes through a single software platform. With nearly two decades of experience and innovation in data protection and information management services, Commvault is committed to helping businesses pursue opportunities that will maximise the productive yield of their stored data by providing them with a modern, unified and adaptable data recovery solution.
We believe that the key to ensuring business continuity lies in securing data recovery readiness for your organisation, which requires a comprehensive one-stop storage solution that will transform your information into a productive strategic asset.
Johan Scheepers, Commvault Systems Engineering Director for MESAT