Every day, some unlucky small business owner finds himself with a dead server or workstation and asks himself that dreaded question: Now what? All too often companies are without a solid recovery plan, and the data is gone forever. We never think it will happen to us, so we either choose to ignore the risk or think, "I’ll get to that tomorrow." But having a solid backup and recovery plan is fairly quick and easy and quite inexpensive, compared with the possible financial impact of lost data.
As a small business owner you must think and plan for disaster recovery (DR) and business continuity (BC) contingencies. Most people use these terms interchangeably, but they are really quite different when it comes to levels of coverage and timing. A good DR plan should have you back up and running in 24 to 26 hours. A BC plan that is actually implemented and tested should have your business back online in less than four hours. So weigh the risks against the costs and benefits and determine which strategy is best for your business and then go ahead and take action before you find yourself asking the dreaded, "Now what?"