Recent technical advances make disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) possible. However, what is DRaaS and how can we implement it?
Businesses are using more data. Therefore, you would assume they need better disaster recovery. Gartner produced figures which placed the worldwide DRaaS market in 2017 at over $2 billion, and predicted a growth to over $3.5 billion by 2021.
What is DRaaS?
DRaaS is a consultancy process where the technical, commercial and legislative requirements are laid out for an individual solution.
Essentially, it is on-demand cloud replica of the operational IT environment of a business. Therefore, where there is an emergency, the failover is quick and easy.
“In any ideal world, the DR service would never be invoked. But disasters do happen and DRaaS is designed to reduce the impact of these events,” says Andrew Wild, product manager at GCI.
Am I in the market for DRaaS?
According to Peter Groucutt, managing director of Databarracks there are two markets for data recovery:
- “There is a small group of generally larger businesses who have ‘traditional DR’ – a complete duplication of their IT infrastructure. That will either be at a second site they own or with a DR service provider.
- “The other, much larger group is of organisations who never really had a comparable solution in place.” They can recover backups, but the site and the hardware to be restored to could be sourced at the time of disruption.
However, Groucutt adds that both groups are affordable.
In terms of businesses
It is not something which clients usually ask for, generally or through Serviceteam. Yet it is something which is provided depending on the characteristics, needs and what IT is needed for a company. DRaaS can be forgotten if a business is not clear about what it would like.
Planning and implementation
Paul Burns, Chief officer of Technology Services Group says organisations should plan and implement DRaaS through analysis of the data estate, platforms and services.
The key is to set aside a recovery point objective and a recovery time objective. Therefore, investment can be prioritised for a company’s individual needs.
Wild comments that there are different needs for businesses. For some, the DR plan is simple with just needing confidence in the ability to have a back up. For others, DR concerns the ability to failover workloads quickly and securely and that the tech will be able to do so.
Services need to be backed up with service level agreement subject to bi-annual DR tests. Recovery points should be as little as five minutes subject to internet activity, says Burns.
It is speculated that in the future, DRaaS, data protection and data management will be linked. Therefore, DRaaS could solve data and security problems highlighted in Serviceteam’s ‘Beyond the Cloud’ Research.
It might be a good idea to think about whether your business has DRaaS or whether your business needs it.
With cheaper internet and cloud services, DRaaS could be a suitable option for your business.
Robert Rutherford, CEO of QuoStar comments the financial impact to a business that is not able to operate during a disaster is huge. DRaaS in some form is essential for all but the largest businesses.
I know I am now contemplating the benefits of this technology. I hope this has helped to clear up some questions you have about this service! Please leave a comment about your experiences with DRaaS, whether this has fit your business needs and your thoughts about wide implementation in UK business.