In case something untoward happens to the operations of an organization, having a business continuity and disaster recovery policy could save a lot of trouble. Business continuity and disaster recovery are two different practices despite being closely related. As the role of information technology continues to increase in modern organizations, the importance of both of these practices becomes more crucial as well. Here is a definition for each of these fields, how they are different, and what they do for organizations.
What is business continuity?
Business continuity is the capability of a business to continue to perform its essential function during and after a disaster. It refers to the plan of action established to ensure that the organization regularly operates when an unexpected event happens.
Business continuity planning involves the formation of risk management procedures and processes that prevent interruptions to critical operations. The plan should keep essential business functions up and running as a disaster happens, as well as a plan to allow operations to quickly recover afterwards. Business continuity plans must consider any unpredictable event, like fires, natural disasters, disease outbreaks, and cyber attacks.
What is disaster recovery?
Disaster recovery is an essential portion of business continuity planning. It is mainly concerned with the restoration of vital support systems, particularly assets that are essential to communications and IT, on both the hardware and software sides. This is the part of business continuity planning that aims to minimize the downtime of operations when disasters occur.
What are their differences and why are they commonly used together?
Disaster recovery (DR) is the more reactive part of business continuity (BC). While business continuity addresses the general concerns of the entire organization, disaster recovery focuses specifically on securing and restoring technology infrastructure.
BC and DR have the same goal of getting the business back on track as soon as possible after disasters. Both are also supposed to cover a wide range of events, from natural disasters to human error and cyber attacks. These similarities can be the reason they are usually used together and why most organizations have the same team to manage BC and DR.
Why is BCDR important?
BC takes into consideration all the general threats organizations may face, and DR delves into the protection, security, and recovery of technological systems. This is important especially since businesses grow increasingly reliant on IT for daily processes, from their internal operations to services they provide to clients.
BCDR also provides a level of assurance for businesses to still operate in the midst of emergencies. Businesses lose a lot of money during downtime, and people in general are less tolerant of it nowadays. Through BCDR, organizations can minimize their losses should a disaster happen, and still keep customers satisfied.
Business continuity and disaster recovery are essential to any business. Administrators may not have to worry about managing their own BCDR though, because some companies provide BCDR services and policies. By preparing companies for untoward incidents, a BCDR plan would make it easier for organizations to focus on their main goals.