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Our technology blogs feature IT tips and best practices for businesses in Columbia, Baltimore, Bel Air and in and about Maryland since 2002.

How to Effectively Measure and Use Data Backup and Disaster Recovery Metrics

How to Effectively Measure and Use Data Backup and Disaster Recovery Metrics

How often do you think about your data backup system? If you’re like most businesses, it’s something that you will likely set up, then quickly forget about, provided you haven’t had to use it. Still, having one is essential to any modern business, and building it with clear outcomes and metrics in mind will help you make your data backup system more effective for the moments when you’re glad you have it.

Today, we will explore the three most important metrics for data backup and disaster recovery: recovery time objective (RTO), recovery point objective (RPO), and backup success rate.

RPO (Recovery Point Objective)

No one anticipates a disaster, but if you experience one, you want to be prepared with the minimum amount of data you need to maintain operations. Simply put, you likely will not be able to keep all your data in the event of a data loss incident, so you have to prioritize the important stuff first. You’ll have to assign a value to your data to determine which types are more important, then take measures during the backup process to ensure that you’re treating it appropriately. For example, there are regulations and compliance requirements for certain types of data that must be considered. More often than not, the most important data, like customer information and financial records, will have low RPO, while less important data might have higher RPO.

RTO (Recovery Time Objective)

Establishing realistic expectations for how long it takes to get back to work after a disaster is also crucial. RTO is the acceptable level of downtime associated with recovering data and restoring business operations following a disaster. One way to gauge this is to ask yourself how long your business will take to get back to an acceptable level of operations, as well as what systems must be in place to make it happen. The important thing here is to get back to work with minimal loss and to continue functionality without running a loss. If you can do this, then a disaster won’t impact you as harshly as you might expect.

Backup Testing and Success Rate

With RPO and RTO in mind, you can create a backup system that allows you to maintain operations and minimize data loss, provided it works the way it should. You should test your backup solution to ensure that it works appropriately toward your goals. You’ll want to measure the amount of failed backups versus the amount of successful backups and keep the successes as high as possible—at least 95 percent, if not higher.

In general, it’s a good idea to regularly test your backup system to ensure that it works for when you will need it most.

Implement Data Backup and Disaster Recovery Today

If your business doesn’t have data backup and disaster recovery, you’re playing a dangerous game. You could be risking everything you have built needlessly. We recommend you work with Dresner Group to identify opportunities to be proactive with your data backup. Call us today at (410) 531-6727 to learn more.

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