The SMB Has The Same Data Challenges as The Large Enterprise Today

Although the SMB is nimble, the SMB also has the challenge of a limited IT staff while data is becoming increasingly more complex.

There are trends impacting the perspective of business, while they prioritize their data backup and resilience programs.

Big Data

Customers using Data Backup and Recovery Solutions are evaluating their present backup and recovery strategies. This is being motivated due to the increase in data complexity because of data variety, velocity and volume.

The Internet of Things

Businesses are integrating specialized devices and applications with core business processes for analytics and advanced business processing. This data from these specialized devices in cars, water meters, etc., has now become corporate data.

Data ManagementThere is a need for the data from all types of devices and social media sources. The result is more complex data types within the SMB business data environment. Businesses are integrating specialized devices and applications with core business processes for analytics and advanced business processing. This data has now become corporate data. SMBs must ensure that critical data is available when needed, even as environments become more complex. Data must also be resilient in the face of regulations, hackers and natural disasters. If disaster does strike, recovery must be fast so there is a minimal impact to the bottom line.

This provides an additional burden on the IT staff in understanding the implications of developing backup procedures for these diverse data types. Central backup procedures must be reviewed by IT for proper governance and assurance of data resiliency. The old method of passing the responsibility of Backup and Recovery to the newest and most junior IT staff person is no longer an option when mission-critical data is now in a combination of structured and unstructured complex formats. The need for a comprehensive data backup strategy becomes more critical to the business, while the implementation of that strategy becomes more complex.

The solution is a Data Backup/Recovery Managed Service Providers (DB/R MSP) that provides remote management of the Backup process, along with professional Disaster Backup and Recovery consultation. Contracting a data backup consultant with the model of remote DB/R management allows the business to maintain their data locally without the need to hire new staff or train existing staff in sophisticated data backup and recovery processes.

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Understand How Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Interrelate

Understanding the importance of Disaster Recovery within a Business Continuity plan has become more important as data types and regulatory requirements have become more complex.

To begin, the difference of disaster recovery and business continuity must be understood. Both disciplines describe a company’s preparation for the mitigation of risks to continued operations. Disaster recovery applies to the technology operations of the business. Whereas, business continuity has a larger scope that includes technology, physical assets and manual business processes such as workflow, customer service and more. As stated in the StandBy article BCP vs DRP “A mistake often made by organisations is that ‘we have an IT DR Plan, we are all ok“.  That is not the case.  You need to have a Business Continuity Plan in place for critical personnel, key business processes, recovery of vital records, critical suppliers identification, contacting of key vendors and clients etc.”

Developing business continuity planThe complexity of these plans has increased along with their importance. For the disaster recovery plan, regulation has added a level of sophistication that was not required as it is today. Data backup and recovery strategies must meet company policies regarding regulatory requirements, data breaches, ability to respond to court orders, and more.

There are real life situations that require the ability to “look back in time”. Consider that data is not only required to be backed up for protection of a catastrophic event, but, it also needs to be restored in different ways for different purposes and meet varying requirements. A request can be made from a government regulatory body to retrieve data from a certain date or from a past event. This requires coordinated strategies and testing to ensure these types of requests can be accomplished. Data Backup strategies must be planned and tested to assure all company requirements regarding data retention and recovery are met.

Data types have become more complex as the Internet of Things has expanded the scope of what data is, where it comes from and what it looks like. As we stated earlier in this Blog in the post THE IOT IS RENDERING YOUR OLD DATA BACK AND RECOVERY PLAN OBSOLETE, “Businesses are integrating the IoT with their mission critical applications at an accelerated rate. There is a need for data from specialized devices and applications to be made available to business applications. The data being generated from devices in trucks, shipping docks, and house water meters are being integrated with core business processes for analytics and advanced business processing. So, this data has now become corporate data.”

Data recovery and its interrelationship with business continuity plans must be understood and then reevaluated to meet modern requirements. Consult with professionals that understand theses complex relationships, such as Salvus Data Consultants, of Texas.

Why the Complexity of Data Backup and Recovery is Not to be Underestimated

Trends in the world of data is causing the backup and recovery of that data to be more complex than it has ver been in the past. The increased complexity of data backup and recovery should not be underestimated.

According to the IBM IEEE Spectrum IBM Bets $3 Billion on the Internet of Things “IBM’s latest business move anticipates huge growth in the Internet of Things, the growing swarm of devices capable of collecting data and sharing it all online. That swarm could include wearable wristband devices such as the Apple Watch, exercise and health-monitoring devices, household gadgets such as Nest’s smart thermostat, and smart cars capable of sharing information about weather and traffic conditions. IBM is betting that many companies will pay handsomely for help in analyzing the deluge of data coming from thousands or millions of sensors and computing devices.”Backup Data Center

The reason data is becoming more complex is because what we consider to be data today we never considered before. What is data? Data is an entity that is input to analysis and reporting so that we may act accordingly. If we need input to determine an action, then the input is data. There was a time when corporations needed only numbers and words for data – for financial reporting for instance. Now, corporations need analog information from devices, sentiment from social media and geo-spatial input to determine the location of the event at the time of interest.

If it is data it needs to backed up for the potential of being recovered upon request. This is becoming more complex than ever.

Data and the backup of that data is getting more complex while over worked IT staffs are still assigning backup and recovery to the ‘new guy’ or sometimes to the most junior specialist in staff. As we have discussed in this blog before “IT staffs are overloaded with mission critical day-today activities. It is understandable that Data Backup may be assigned to the newest member of the team and not deeply analyzed. However, it will become the most critical task the IT staff will undertake when that data needs to be recovered.”

Outsourcing Data backup processes to experienced professionals that specialize in this new form of data is a logical first choice to consider. One purpose to outsource is to free up the time of the IT staff to focus on core business strategies instead of training on the new Backup and Recovery techniques and then spending hours each day looking at logs and emails. The Storage Administrator can be released from the endless cycle of repeating the same tasks over and over again. And, the processes can be designed and performed by experts in the field of complex data backup and recovery.

Contact Salvus Data, specialists in data backup and recovery using Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM).