From regular backups to reductions in downtime, there are many benefits associated with having the cloud included in your Business Continuity Plan (BCP). Last month we spoke about BCPs and why they are essential for any business. This is basically a document that outlines the vital information your organization needs in order to continue operating when an unplanned event happens, such as natural disasters, pandemics, cyberattacks, or human error.

From offsite backups to virtualizing your servers, you can’t ignore the importance of equipping your business with the tools and strategic consulting you need to keep your business running efficiently – despite any crisis that you may be dealing with. Having a BCP in place will cover these possible risks to preserve the reputation and health of your organization. The cloud should be an essential part of your business continuity plan for several reasons.

How Cloud Computing Supports Business Continuity

Cloud computing, an alternative to desktop-based programs, involves the use of a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, process, and manage data rather than a personal computer or local server.

Just because it’s called cloud computing doesn’t mean all the information is floating around somewhere. There is a data center somewhere in your workplace with servers that store your data and run your programs. There are many layers between you and the data that you can’t control, and a cloud-based system will keep everything organized and in one place so it’s easily retrievable.

When it comes to business continuity, there are many benefits associated with cloud computing, such as:

  • Regular backups and easy failover
  • Reduction in downtime
  • Better information security and network management
  • Ability to scale to suit your business needs (i.e., keeping critical data on-premise while backing the rest up to the cloud
  • Reduction in DoS attacks (disruption of service)
  • No need to maintain an expensive mirror site of the infrastructure
  • No need to sync software on two sites
  • Reduction in recovery time to just a few minutes
  • No need to travel to a remote site during difficult or dangerous circumstances
  • Ability to use multiple devices to access software anytime and anywhere Internet access is available.
  • Offers high availability in emergencies, with no need for disaster recovery equipment and staff.
  • Ability to quickly support a system without purchasing hardware and maintaining the data center environment.
  • Ability to pay for only what you use rather than pre-purchasing resources.

Increase Operational Ability and Scalability

Agility forms the backbone of business continuity management. That means your organization has to be able to adapt to changes and unexpected disruptions such as cyberattacks and global pandemics. Many organizations today are still reliant on in-house networks and data centers powered by inefficient legacy technology. In this type of environment, a simple local power or Internet outage lasting just one hour can result in millions in unscheduled downtime.

These also bring many physical limitations to the table. You may have limited space to install backup services and network infrastructure, and the space you do have will quickly be depleted with the amount of data that your business operations generate only increasing as time goes on. Physical space is finite, but using cloud-based software to streamline business continuity is made possible by seamless disaster recovery and backup, as well as limitless scalability.

With the cloud, you get unlimited data storage potential as well as processing power and functionality that is readily available with cloud-based apps, all without solely depending on local physical infrastructure.

Maximize Uptime

A hallmark of business continuity planning is the ability to optimize availability of mission-critical resources so customer service and employee productivity do not suffer. When you implement cloud-based business continuity, you are able to automatically and continuously replicate data systems and recovery efforts.

Reduction in Recovery Time

Perhaps the biggest benefit to business continuity in the cloud is that it reduces recovery time in the event a disaster strikes by ensuring recovery operations are able to be performed quickly and efficiently.

Implementing a Cloud-Based Business Continuity Plan

Before implementation, there are some things you need to do, such as:

  • Audit your distributed platform, including all users, devices, software, and hardware.
  • Conduct a risk assessment to identify potential risks to your business operations.
  • Document workarounds, identifying specific cloud services you can use to guarantee ongoing business operations in times of crisis.
  • List all key cloud service contacts, including for support personnel, IT staff members, and cloud service providers.
  • Come up with a contingency plan for when on-premises apps are down but the cloud is still available, and vice versa.
  • Test all cloud-related parts of your BCP.

Of course, all this is made easier with some help from experts in the field. That’s where we come in.

Request a Quote on a BCP From Cardinal Technology Solutions

Let the team at Cardinal Technology Solutions help you formulate and implement a business continuity plan that is unique to your business. Get a free quote today on our business continuity plans throughout Winchester, VA.