From Climate Change to Human Error: Make IT Resilience a Priority for your Organization

From Climate Change to Human Error: Make IT Resilience a Priority for your Organization

Climate change, and the resulting increase in climate-related weather events, are top of mind for consumers and business leaders alike. It impacts industries like energy/utilities and agriculture, but it can also impact supply chains and operations of other organizations, as well, as Harvard Business School students discovered last year.

While these incidents are highly visible, and part of an international conversation, they overshadow a critical reality of disaster preparedness. The real hurricane isn’t the one traveling across the Atlantic Ocean – it’s your systems administrator.

The Uptime Institute found that 70% of data center outages are caused by human error – a staggering statistic that should concern most business leaders, and reveals quite a bit about how most organizations approach Disaster Recovery:

Disaster Recovery (DR) is still largely a reactive activity for most organizations. Hurricanes grab headlines, and business horror stories linger in our minds. However, the reality that downtime is more frequent, and the causes are more mundane than the term “disaster recovery” might indicate, is a sign that most organizations don’t dedicate enough time or resources to DR. The pace at which business moves is increasing, as is the cost of downtime. Most organizations can benefit from approaching DR in a more proactive way.

Every organization can benefit from a shift away from DR towards IT Resilience. One way to be more proactive in your Disaster Recovery, and to shift your organization’s focus toward all causes of downtime, is to focus on the concept of “IT Resilience”. Make redundancy and backup a part of your overall IT strategy. Multi-cloud and cloud DR are ways to move data and applications into different geographies. Include regular testing in your IT Resilience strategy, so you can be confident when the time comes to failover.

IT Resilience is a human and a technological process. Unless you choose a fully managed DR solution, there will be a human element to your ability to successfully failover. Somebody needs to make judgement calls regarding tiers of applications, and what is an acceptable Recovery Time Objective and Recovery Point Objective for those tiers. Somebody has to perform the tests, and ultimately, when a disaster occurs, somebody has to press the button to initiate the failover. That moment can be nerve-wracking, particularly if you’ve never failed over completely. The human aspect of IT resilience cannot be overstated or overlooked.

By having a well-documented proactive IT Resilience strategy, by imbedding it within other IT processes, and by ensuring that your IT team is confident and ready to act when the time comes, your organization can be prepared for any downtime event, from the frequent and mundane to the rare and catastrophic.

OVHcloud offers a VMware-based Disaster Recovery as a Service solution that sits within our Hosted Private Cloud product. To learn more, click here.

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