As 2017 winds down to a close, having a disaster recovery and backup plan for your small business should be top of mind for 2018. Many organizations experienced cybersecurity attacks in 2017 that shut their business down for a period of time. Regardless of how long that period of time was, the reality is that those businesses lost revenue, and their brand image was impacted as a result.

This can be a lesson for your small business into 2018: be prepared. You cannot predict the things that will happen, but you can ensure that you have a plan in place to deal with them. For small businesses, this means having a disaster recovery and backup plan in place. Whether you’re dealing with hackers, natural disasters or simply human error, you cannot let events such as these derail your business.

Many small businesses don’t want to acknowledge that this can happen to them too, instead thinking that larger enterprise businesses will be the target of hackers. This is not the case, small businesses are just as much of a target, and may in fact be more vulnerable to the effects of having a disaster taking your business offline.

It’s no longer a matter of if but when. As such, preparation is key. You need to have a backup plan for your small business. By having a disaster recovery/backup plan in place, you are protecting your business and ensuring that you can recover, despite “disaster.”

In this blog, we will discuss why a backup plan for your small business is so important to keep your business (and sales) up and running, why Azure Site Recovery/Backup is our recommended backup plan for your small business, and three ways that Azure Site Recovery/Backup can help your small business.

 

2 Main Reasons Why Having a Backup Plan for Your Small Business is Critical

Data and Disaster Recovery aren’t typically synonymous with Sales, but they aren’t as far apart as you’d think. In fact, having a Disaster Recovery/backup plan in place for your small business is an important facet of good customer service, which is a central tenet of Sales. Below we discuss the two main areas of customer service that can negatively impact your sales, and your company as a whole, if a disaster recovery/backup plan is not in place.

(Not) In Service

It doesn’t matter whether it’s a regular day or one where you’re in crisis mode; either way you need to be able to take care of your customers – or your competitors will. Even if you have the greatest sales rep ever working for your company, they can’t make any sales if the business has been taken offline by an event, whether it’s from hackers or a natural disaster. By having a backup plan for your small business, you can ensure that your business will continue to function with minimal interruptions, something that is absolutely key for continued Sales success.

Maintain Trust

In Sales, trust is critical. Once you’ve worked hard to earn that trust, you don’t want to lose it over something like a data hack. If you look to the recent example of Uber, where a hack compromised the data of 57 million users, the damage to their brand from not being prepared was considerable – and avoidable. Instead of acknowledging that the hack happened, they paid the hackers a bribe and tried to keep it a secret. When it inevitably came to light, it became far more damaging than if it had been properly handled in the first place. For your sales team, trust is critical to maintaining good client relationships and it helps to build confidence in your brand. As such, you must protect your customers and their data. A disaster recovery and data backup plan for your small business can ensure that their trust was not misplaced.

 

Azure Site Recovery/Backup for Small Business

Let’s consider the following scenario: your sales team is working on a big deal – if they land it, this could mean over a hundred thousand dollars in revenue for your organization. They’ve been working for several weeks to close this customer, and have finally progressed to the ‘close’ phase. They need to provide the customer with a finalized quote by end of business Wednesday. But, on Tuesday night, you get a call from your local fire department… there’s been extensive fire and water damage done to your building.

So, the question becomes, do you have a Disaster Recovery/backup Plan in place? Are you able to get up and running in time to help your sales team meet that 5 o’clock deadline the next day?

Of course, disasters aren’t limited to natural disasters, like fires… In fact, most common causes of IT disasters come from operational failures, like power failures, hardware/software failures, and/or network failures.

backup plan for small business

This is where Azure Site Recovery/Backup comes into play. Azure Site Recovery (or ASR) allows you to protect your environment in an effort to ensure that you have business continuity in the event of a disaster (like the fire scenario above).

Azure Site Recovery replicates your servers (whether they’re physical or Cloud-based), fails over, and recovers workloads so that they can remain available to your small business if a failure of any kind occurs. Backup service works to keep your organization’s data safe and recoverable.

Simply put, Azure Site Recovery/Backup allows you to proactively protect your organization’s environment and enjoy peace of mind knowing that your environment is fully protected. It never hurts to have a backup plan in place.

 

3 Ways Azure Site Recovery/Backup Can Help Your Small Business Survive

#1 – Azure Site Recovery/Backup Allows Your Small Business to Test Your Disaster Recovery Options

If you have a Disaster Recovery/Bankup Plan, have you ever tested it? Do you test it regularly to ensure that, in the event of a disaster, your Plan will perform to your expectations and get you up and running as fast as you need to? Not all Disaster Recovery/Bacnk Plans are easy to test – in fact, if you’re using a third-party provider, they may not even allow you to test it because of the level of complexity surrounding the test.

With Azure Site Recovery, you can test your Plan whenever you want. And running any Disaster Recovery drills won’t have an impact on your primary systems, either. By allowing failover to your backup environment to ensure it’s working, you can give you – and your employees – the assurance and the confidence they need that, in the event of a disaster, your system will function as it should.

#2 – Orchestrated Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) for Your Small Business

As much as we wish it wasn’t so, disasters will hit everyone sooner or later. It’s not a matter of “if”, but “when” a disaster strikes. Small businesses are just as at risk as large corporations. That’s why it’s so important to be proactive and have a backup plan for your small business in place. There are a lot of Disaster Recovery solutions out there today, but Azure Site Recovery certainly ranks up there with one of the best.

Why is this? Because Azure Site Recovery is capable of automating the recovery of services if a site outage happens. This means that your backup system can be set up to automatically kick in should a disaster occur. Even if your organization has complex, multi-tiered workloads, you can still bring over applications in an orchestrated way so that your vital services are restored quickly.

If we look at the fire scenario in the section above, this means that the sales deal your team has worked so hard on closing won’t be affected when that disaster strikes – Azure Site Recovery will automatically fail over to your backup site, and your team can send that finalized quote to the customer by the deadline.

#3 – Your Data is Always Being Backed Up Through Continual Replication

Let’s return to our scenario in the section above and apply it to your business: What would happen if a fire broke out in your building? Do you have a solid enough Disaster Recovery/Backup Plan to keep your small business going with minimal interruptions? How soon would it be before you could get back up and running? A few hours? A few weeks? A few months?

If you use Azure Site Recovery for your small business’s backup plan, you have the opportunity for continuous replication, depending on the type of server you’re using. This means that your data could be replicated on a continuous basis, so all of your data would be available to you from the moment that you choose to failover to your backup system.

So, if your organization had a fire (like in the scenario we gave), you could failover to your backup system and be up and running, quite literally, with a few clicks of a mouse.

 

A Backup Plan for Small Business is An Important Facet of Good Customer Service

Here’s how a Disaster Recovery/Backup Plan should affect your small business: Your organization suffers a disastrous event, so you failover to your Azure Site Recovery backup the moment you discover how the disaster has impacted your business. Since you had a backup plan for your small business, your sales team sends your prospective client the final quote by the deadline, the customer signs it, and you sit back and celebrate landing that hundred thousand-dollar deal.

This is why Disaster Recovery/Backup plan is so important to small businesses! It helps you continue to take care of your customers, and with a solid Disaster Recovery/Backup plan, you can maintain your data and keep your customers’ trust in you. And Azure Site Recovery/Backup is a solid solution that helps protect your organization’s environment, giving you the peace of mind knowing your environment is fully protected.

Interested in how Azure Site Recovery/Backup can help your small business? Talk to ProServeIT today – our experts can help you set up the right disaster recovery plan for your small business.


This blog post is co-authored by ProServeIT and Change Connect. We publish a monthly blog specifically written for small businesses. Some of the topics we have discussed include security, CRM, Cloud computing, and Business Intelligence (BI). Click here to view a list of the previous co-authored blogs for small businesses.

About ProServeIT

Helping customers secure their identity, data and devices and manage advanced cybersecurity is one of ProServeIT’s main priorities. For over fifteen years, ProServeIT has been going end-to-end on our customers’ transformation journey; from infrastructure, to productivity, security, and managed services, ProServeIT can help guide you through every stage of your digital transformation, helping you be more effective, efficient and safe. 

About Change Connect

Change Connect specializes in helping clients to work more efficiently and effectively in pursuit of their revenue goals. We offer customized solutions for small to midsized businesses with a focus on Sales Transformation, which includes our customized sales training. Whatever stage your business is at, whether you’re a start-up looking to expand or an established company looking to move from a plateau to record growth, Change Connect is your partner in transformation.