As a small business owner, you owe it to yourself, your employees, stakeholders, and any customer you serve to honestly answer this one question: Is your business resilient enough to withstand short or long-term interruptions to its operations?
The answer should be immediate. If you have to pause or think for one second before responding, the answer is no. Each day of business brings with it an unforeseen risk. Whether it’s catastrophic weather conditions, cybersecurity threats, or the vulnerabilities of the technology we’re dependent on to perform daily work functions, there must be both a business continuity (BC) and disaster recovery (DR) plan in place. There must also be a complete confidence in the effectiveness of the BC/ DR strategies that are implemented.
A Competent BC/DR Strategy Is a Must
Often misconceived as a problem for the “big guys,” business continuity is a concern for businesses and organizations of all sizes – whether there are 5 or 5,000 employees. The costs of having no solutions in place are too high for many smaller companies to rebound from. Several hours of unplanned downtime can result in thousands of dollars lost each hour.
That’s the kind of disruption a small business may face from a shorter-duration tech issue or power outage. Imagine the consequences of longer lasting outages, where a business may be down for days or weeks, as seen in natural disasters like Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Katrina, or acts of terror like the 2001 World Trade Center attack.
The truth of the matter is most small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) aren’t doing nearly enough when it comes to continuity and disaster planning. It’s inconceivable that in this era where smaller businesses store more sensitive data than ever before, and the risk of losing this data is so great, that a 2011 Systematic survey revealed that up to 57% of small businesses still have no business continuity or disaster recovery plan in place.