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Disaster Recovery Preparedness

Excerpts used by permission from Estreet.ws

Being prepared for a time of emergency is just another test of your organization's resiliance and of its chances for survival.

In a global economy, we all must be prepared to deal with the unexpected but meeting the challenge of disaster recovery gives new meaning to the word "challenge."

And it's not just enough to "survive" but the real test is to have true business continuity. How is that possible? Having a duplicate office, with duplicate records, and duplicate services and duplicate personnel? Well, that's just not practical, but what is very realistic is contracting with an executive suite / office business center as a part of your long term business strategy. You certainly can't compete from under water, unless that's the business you are in.

You say, why do we need to do anything? It's just an added expense to our already high overhead. Well, let's take a look at the protection that kind of "insurance" can provide. For example, do you have adequate backups on all your critical systems? including customer files, equipment inventories, receivables, contracts? (You should have copies of all your business transactions, purchase orders, change orders, etc. downloaded into some type of media, with one set stored off site.)

But, better yet, if you want to discover how vulnerable you are, just do this exercise. Sit for a moment and pretend that your office burned completely to the ground. Nothing is left, no equipment, no records, no phone system, no files, no backups (they were burned too) ... nothing! You have no addresses of your clients, no appointment calendars, no phone numbers for your employees, your consultants, your vendors, and no proof of your losses to the insurance company. So what value would you place on an alternative scenario to this disaster?

And "now" is the time to be thinking about it.

Executive suites and office business centers unlike any other provider can complete your transition from disaster to operating efficiency instantly. Try this on for size, you make one phone call and "your" receptionist begins answering your business lines, forwarding calls when and where appropriate. Your employees begin straggling in following directions and procedures posted on the web site, updated by your executive suite account manager who has been alerted by pager. Your backup files are uploaded to the server and your mini-network or WAN is fully operational for your employees/clients/prospects to log on. Essentially, and that's the key word, the essentials, you are in business.

None of us can pretend to know all the answers, but there is no substitute for being prepared. What price would you pay today to save your entire business and revenue stream tomorrow? After you've given it some thought, explore the promise of an executive suite, help ensure your business continuity and be truly prepared in case of a disaster. Remember, resources are limited, and are handled BEFORE the disaster on a first come first serve basis. AFTER the disaster is anybody's guess and having a guaranteed space and access to services, telecommunications and all the other "essentials" to keep your business going until you can rebuild . . . well, that's one contract you want to negotiate "before" the fact.

Pat Garner, a 16 year veteran of the executive suite/serviced office industry, co-founder of the Executive Suite Network, and President of InterData Access Corporation, the sponsoring organization for Esuite.co.uk, has written many articles for the industry, served on numerous boards and committees, and served on the OBCAI's task force for Disaster Preparedness.

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