The current health crisis has raised disaster recovery (DR) concerns for many organizations. As mandates to shelter in place rained down on corporations and educational institutions, a frantic effort to enable remote work capabilities resulted in an often-haphazard deployment of IT resources. As the dust begins to settle, many IT managers may be left wondering what happened and will undoubtedly look to develop new strategies to be better prepared for disaster recovery in the future.
With so many everyday considerations on the minds of IT asset managers and the unique nature of this pandemic, it is understandable that many were not fully prepared for an event like the one the world is experiencing.
Replicating the wide breadth of services required to keep your organization running in an entirely remote capacity is no small task. These reactive remote solutions are going to change the way the world operates. Traditional physical infrastructure, once thought to be the only option, will become merely an option. Some are calling it a remote revolution.
However, there are many elements of IT infrastructure that don’t transfer as easily, or at all, to a remote environment. For these elements, disaster recovery plans must be reviewed and reinforced.
Data centers and the unique workloads managed involve unique challenges. Regulatory constraints aim to provide adequate protection and management of critical data on an everyday basis. However, these add additional levels of complexity during a disaster when IT asset managers are struggling to provide uninterrupted access to that data.
Disaster Recovery Considerations
To assess your readiness for disaster recovery, it is critical to evaluate the following factors:
As global internet traffic reaches unprecedented heights, many organizations will find themselves forced to move data center services to external providers. With new burdens now shifted to the infrastructure of these vendors, IT asset managers must keep tabs on vendors to understand if they are adequately managing risk.
As any disaster evolves, infrastructure will be increasingly tested. IT asset managers should consider the supply chain of providers and the risk that one of them might become compromised during a disaster. Assess whether your providers are adequately diversified to mitigate the risk of connectivity interruptions.
Under both normal and disaster recovery circumstances, maintaining uptime of critical applications is vital, so you know what is happening in your data center at all times. Data center visibility is particularly important when data moves offsite and you lose physical access and some insight about rack location. Since remote data center management tools must update in real time, auto discovery becomes an important consideration.
When was the last time you checked your inventory of cybersecurity policies? The fact that many organizations move data to centralized locations during a disaster is not lost on cyber criminals. Security policies among all of your organization’s vendors must be reviewed and reassessed.
Controlling disease and disinfecting your physical facility is another disaster recovery consideration. Precautions should be implemented for technical staff who maintain operations of the data center and should continually be reviewed during staff replacements or shift rotations.
Disaster Recovery Planning for the New Normal
The current health crisis is going to create a new path forward. Not only will we enter several phases of recovery, but we will ultimately find ourselves in an environment molded by a new definition of normal.
Disaster recovery provides opportunities to reimagine best practices for data center operations. Procedures and policies will most certainly evolve as a result.
Organizations who have never before considered leveraging the power of data center infrastructure management (DCIM) capabilities will now have the chance to revolutionize the way their IT departments manage their data centers. By automating data center management with auto-discovery tools for network, physical or virtual infrastructures, and integrating powerful REST APIs with other tools, IT departments can maintain accurate data center documentation and evolve to keep pace with the new normal.
Your customers expect you to have a firm disaster recovery plan and provide uninterrupted business continuity for them. Take the time now to ensure you are not only meeting, but exceeding, their expectations. See the pandemic as an opportunity to revitalize your investment strategy in critical infrastructure in order to prepare your organization for the new normal.
With Device42, companies can adopt data center visualization tools as their data physically relocate and provide their IT departments with access to intelligent data center diagrams that accurately reflect the IT environment. If you need a fast way to augment your disaster recovery efforts before your next outage, we can help you rapidly improve your posture. If you’re interested, download our 30-day free trial today.