How to Move Data Restoration to the Top of the To-Do List

How to Move Data Restoration to the Top of the To-Do List

When developing a strategy for restoring data in the event of an emergency, IT managers must train employees, make sure they practice over and over, and be sure to utilize easy-to-use yet effective technology.

Kornelius Brunner is the Head of Product Management at TeamViewer.

Despite the growing awareness surrounding the importance of backing up data, many organizations still see it as a nuisance and are willing to take the chance on their own technology. However, since backing up data is extremely important to businesses, it can’t be just another item added to the end of a to-do list. IT managers must take on the responsibility to ensure that all data is backed up on a regular basis.

However, backing up data is just the first step; having the ability to restore the data in case of data loss is equally important. According to a NetApp Study, only 33 percent of the IT professionals surveyed were certain that they were able to retrieve their data quickly and correctly during an emergency. In fact, only a quarter of the companies with data backup processes practice for such an emergency with employees.

To be part of the well-prepared 25 percent, IT professionals need to make a conscious effort to be sure employees know how to restore their data by teaching them to do it the correct way. However, all the training in the world doesn't replace practicing over and over again. Once employees have it down, monthly restore trainings will ensure that data recovery is second nature; as they say, "practice makes perfect.”

A detailed handbook that lists step-by-step instructions should an emergency occur is a great resource for employees. Monthly training sessions may be enough for some, but others may feel more confident when they can practice independently.

Again, while it is important that employees understand the restoration process, IT needs to choose the best data restoration technology for ensuring 100 percent backup compliance and to be prepared to take over the restoration process if necessary.

Restoration technology should be evaluated in two ways:

Flexibility

First, company-wide technology implementations must be easy enough for employees to understand and flexible enough for IT managers to implement. For backup and restoration technology, it is important that IT managers can save and restore data to a precise location, where users can be confident they’ll find it in case of an emergency if the IT manager is not around. However, in the event that the user has forgotten the backup location and it cannot be found inside the virtual backpack, a flexible search function within the backups can prove very useful.

Ease of Use

Following Murphy's Law, data loss seems to always occur at the worst possible moment. Whether it is when finalizing an important presentation or writing an urgent briefing for the boss, there is usually not a lot of time to search for the backed-up data during an "accident." However, it should also not be necessary. Expending time and effort to retrieve data contradicts the basic idea that a backup should be easy to use. It should be thought of as a rescue parachute that engages at exactly the right moment.

In today's world of increasing cyber attacks on companies, no one should count on the unconditional availability of data. An accidental deletion can quickly transform a normal workday into chaos, and employees must be skilled enough to perform a backup and restoration.

Industry Perspectives is a content channel at Data Center Knowledge highlighting thought leadership in the data center arena. See our guidelines and submission process for information on participating. View previously published Industry Perspectives in our Knowledge Library.

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