Anyone living in the Mid-Atlantic region is well aware of the recent weather conditions wreaking havoc on local residents and businesses. Just last week, PECO had over 600,000 power outages in the 5 county Philadelphia area. Many of these outages were businesses, and in some cases lasted over 4 days.
Can you imagine the amount of lost productivity for a 4-day total outage to a business?
We can. We see it everyday. Small to mid-sized businesses still heavily rely on local servers at their office to run critical apps for payroll and accounting, not to mention email. Email is easy to put offsite, but how do you add business continuity to office apps like Quickbooks? Remote Data Backup is NOT the solution. If your office is dark, having a copy of your data in the cloud does not help you get back up and running. What you need is true business continuity.
For most businesses, the simplest solution is using virtualization to replicate your core office servers and desktops to a remote a data center. The servers are replicated exactly, including all applications and data. The desktop environments are built to contain basic applications and custom apps that talk to the server to effectively replicate a working office environment. Everything is pre-built and put into standby mode. Live data is then backed up daily.
When an emergency event happens and the office goes offline, employees can make use of their home internet access and remotely connect to the virtualized desktop environments sitting at a safe and secure datacenter. From those desktop sessions, they can access replicated copies of their office file servers, office apps like Quickbooks or ACT, and even email.
A recent study shows that even during widespread power outages, 8 out of 10 office employees typical have power and internet at home even when their employers office goes down, and if they dont have power or internet they can be mobile and find a location that does.
What’s the alternative?
Add a generator to your office and some form of radio based 4G internet access. 4G internet will cost between $50-$100 per month plus a few hundred in startup cost for equipment. A generator will cost approximately $25,000 to $50,000 (depending on building load size) for most small to mid size business in the 2,000 to 10,000 sqft size range. That doesn’t include semi-annual maintenance and testing, and during a failure, extended run-time beyond 24 hours can be difficult.
Virtualizaton is much more affordable…
To virtualize a server and 5 desktops, you are looking at approximately $250-$300/month recurring with maybe $1000-$2000 in one-time setup fees. Thats a much better alternative to a generator install that may not even be that reliable. Better yet, this DR solution also acts as a data backup solution which most businesses need anyway.
Ditch the generator and virtualize your office for true business continuity and disaster recovery!