After reading this title, you’re either agreeing with me – as you remember downtime issues you had to deal with in 2014; or you’re one of the lucky ones shaking your head in disbelief that this is still a huge problem in this day and age.
And yet it is.
A recent study found that “…data loss and downtime cost enterprises $1.7 trillion in the last 12 months, or the equivalent of nearly 50 percent of Germany’s GDP.” For industries as mature as the data center space and as well-established as the cloud computing industry, this has to be looked at as a surprise.
Connecting your customers is, essentially, the foundation that the data center and cloud computing industries are built upon. The value in these businesses should be in providing connections to the internet, critical applications and data, 24/7/365. So why are outages still happening – and why are customers putting up with it?
Those are questions that don’t have an easy answer, but in looking at the survey, it seems that many businesses simply didn’t give themselves another choice besides grinning and bearing it.
According to a recent analysis of the survey by industry publication TechTarget, the same survey found that “…51 percent of businesses lack a disaster recovery plan for big data, mobile or hybrid cloud workloads, and only 6 percent have a disaster recovery plan for all three.” The lack of a plan or even a solid backup that can be put into action right away obviously affects the ability for businesses to stem any downtime and keep their organizations running at top speed while back-end issues are solved. In fact, the survey went on to say that “…71 percent of organizations are not fully confident in their ability to recover after a disruption.”
Being unable to access your data, information and applications is a huge problem that halts modern business success in its tracks. Companies can lose a whole workday because of downtime – or worse, upset an important client that was depending on you. In fact, the survey continues by revealing “…the impact of data loss was that 64 percent of enterprises experienced data loss or downtime over the last year for an average of 25 hours of unexpected downtime. Thirty-six percent reported loss of revenue and 34 percent said product development was delayed because of downtime.”
Make a resolution to eliminate this as an issue in 2015. But how, you might ask? To start, there are a few quick things you can add to your checklist to start the year:
- Demand better service-level agreements: if you don’t have uptime itemized in your contracts, shame on you. You should demand a high uptime and work in penalties if these thresholds are not met.
- Create a disaster recovery plan: detail what your company will do in situations where the primary connection isn’t available. Can you work off of backups? Also, a part of this is, naturally, making sure you have those backups in place.
- Be willing to call your vendor out on downtime: informally, we’ve found that several companies let downtime slide without asking for restitution from their vendors – even if it’s in the contract.