One of the core strengths of an SME is agility. The ability to act quickly and decisively when a new challenge presents itself – and having a functioning disaster recovery plan in place is a very good place to start.

Martin RobertsThe best executives in such a business are able to make rapid decisions that maximise the chances of gaining from a new opportunity or minimise the risk of any threat.

They have the ability to rapidly assess a situation and its inputs, judge what the outcomes might be, and then plan to achieve the desired outcome. These particular strengths are key when dealing with novel and unknown new events.

This is also what makes being in small and medium size businesses exciting – it’s the power to influence events as they happen.

However, there are occasions where the qualities of a leader cannot be relied on alone. The chances of issues with your IT systems are considerable – they range from ‘possible’ to ‘probable’ and this is for many reasons.

  • Hardware can fail – perhaps you suffer a power surge, power cut, or just simple wear and tear over time.
  • Software is updated automatically (for all the right reasons) but in very rare circumstances these updates can break your system, or produce software conflicts that impact your ability to work.
  • People make mistakes – it happens. Perhaps somebody in your business accidently deletes a critical file or falls for a phishing email, allowing malware to infect your business.

There are also other factors to consider that are not directly related to your technology. Your workplace might be burgled or vandalised and fires and floods are not entirely uncommon.The point is this. If we accept that the probability of some of these events are relatively high, then failing to plan for such events is, at best, short-sighted. At worst? Neglection of duty.It’s certainly better to have a well-defined disaster recovery plan with clear steps for you to take, rather than testing your decision-making prowess and agility in the middle of an IT disaster. It just isn’t the place to do this.

A proactive approach must be part of your skillset; anticipating the actions your business will take in the event of losing access to business systems. This is where a disaster recovery plan comes in to play.

Consider all of the circumstances. How will you take orders? Despatch? Receive deliveries? How will you carry out all the activities that you do now which rely on your systems to capture and automate? Your disaster recovery plan must account for these, which we can help you with. The best SMEs are agile and smart – the very best are astute too. They plan what can be planned before the event.

This is why, as an SME business owner, I believe that a disaster recovery plan is a business essential.

Don’t just take my word for it, however. Find out how we saved one of our customers over half a million pounds in downtime in our latest case study.