These days, as CIOs are told to do more with less and find cost-effective solutions that meet business goals, the cloud has seen tremendous growth. One of the most cost-effective solutions that is seeing phenomenal uptake is Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS). According to Gartner, DRaaS is a $2.02 billion business currently, and it is expected to reach $3.73 billion by 2021.
What you Should Look for in a Cloud Disaster Recovery Solution
Making the decision to move to cloud-based disaster recovery seems like a no brainer, however companies must take a step back and consider what makes up an effective DRaaS solution. There are many features to consider as you make the shift to the cloud. In addition to bandwidth constraints and data size, the solution must factor in the following:
Network and Latency
When deploying cloud solutions, the speed of the connection is imperative. A Backup and DR solution is only as strong as the underlying network, as backup and replica jobs will take much longer if the network is slow. Additionally, the speed of recovery will be impacted and a higher latency network could mean more downtime for your business. It is important to find a cloud provider with a low latency network. Make sure to review their SLA and understand their level of latency and downtime policy.
Ease of Use
Migrating to a cloud solution is supposed to make your life easier. Make sure that you conduct a POC of your solution to see if it is easy to use and manage.
Failover + Failback
A DR solution is useless if you cannot successfully fail over your environment to a secondary site and fail back once your primary environment is up and running.
It is a best practice to have multiple copies of your data on multiple devices, but it is also a best practice to ensure that at least one of those copies is located far enough that the data would not be affected by the same outage or event. This ensures that even if one copy is destroyed, your business will be able to recover.
One of the main benefits of choosing cloud solutions is that they are more affordable and cost effective than the alternative. It is important to evaluate your business's environment and understand if the cloud makes financial sense for you.
The ability to meet recovery point objectives and recovery time objectives (RPO/RTO) is an important part of backup and recovery. If your solutions cannot get your business back online in a timely manner, this can mean lost revenue and customers.
When choosing a cloud provider, understand the security parameters outlined in their services and how your data will be protected. For most providers this means that your data will be encrypted in transit and at rest as well as held in a certified data center.
If you do not test your backup and DR solutions how can you be sure that they work? It is imperative that you conduct proper tests before there is a need to actually use the solution.
Cloud solutions often give you the benefit of being able to grow as your data grows. Make sure that you find a provider that does not penalize you for this growth.
Cloud solutions should be reliable. Understand the SLA of your provider and how downtime could impact your business and make sure your solution will work. This is where testing your DR plan is important.
There are many benefits to deploying a cloud-based disaster recovery solution. However, before you begin the implementation process, you must do your due diligence to ensure you have considered what kind of solution is right for your business, and what features you need to be successful. Taking the time to ensure your DR solution has the above requirements will drastically improve your level of confidence in your business's DR strategy.