Understanding the differences between disaster recovery vs business continuity is crucial. Both are essential concepts in risk management. Making a plan for both operational crises can protect your business or organization when disaster strikes. Let’s take a look at five key differences between disaster recovery and business continuity.
What Is Disaster Recovery?
Disaster recovery plans are procedures designed to restore operations and critical data after a disaster. In most cases, a disaster recovery plan specifies what to do after an incident (like a natural disaster or cyberattack) has occurred and outlines the steps needed to restore the organization to working order. Preparing a disaster recovery plan includes steps like forming a recovery team, identifying business-critical processes to safeguard, and training employees on how to respond to a disaster.
What Is Business Continuity?
Business continuity planning focuses on maintaining vital business processes while recovering from a disruptive event. Businesses continuity strategies include:
- Backing up data and critical systems
- Setting up redundant computer equipment
- Performing business impact analysis
- Planning ways to prevent similar disruptions in the future
Business continuity may include disaster recovery but also encompasses broader initiatives to keep the business profitable and functional in the wake of disruption.
What Are The Top 5 Differences Between Disaster Recovery Vs Business Continuity?
Disaster recovery plans support recovery from a crisis, whereas business continuity plans protect an organization from the impact of a crisis. Both plans are critical business functions and sound similar. Here are the five major differences between the two.
Disaster recovery plans are general. They’ll address a variety of potential emergencies and disasters. They won’t detail exactly what to do in every scenario, but they will give you an idea of what to expect and how to respond.
Business continuity plans are more detailed. They’re specific to the organization, and they include things like contingency plans and what steps to take if certain situations arise. They’re designed to cover every eventuality and ensure that the organization continues to operate smoothly.
Disaster recovery plans focus on recovering from crises, specifically the restoration of important IT systems and data after a disaster. Business continuity plans ensure the survival of the business by protecting it from interruptions in its day-to-day operations.
In a disaster recovery plan, you restore essential data and systems from backups. These steps might include temporarily relocating IT equipment to a location outside of the affected area or setting up an alternate IT infrastructure to ensure that critical systems are up and running. In business continuity plans, you outline the steps you need to take to ensure the continued survival of your business in the event that an incident occurs.
The Processes & Actions
Disaster recovery plans include identifying a backup data center to use for operations if the disaster’s primary site is compromised. Then, move the data from the primary site to the backup site when the disaster occurs. Once the restoration is complete, transfer the data to the primary site.
Business continuity planning should identify key processes and develop plans for the continuation of these processes under all foreseeable circumstances. The business continuity team should analyze these key processes and identify any weaknesses that an external threat could exploit.
The Involved Stakeholders
The stakeholders in a disaster recovery team are the system administrators who oversee the organization’s infrastructure, networks, and security components. The IT staff creates the backups necessary to restore affected systems and data in the event of an outage.
In a business continuity scenario, the stakeholders are executives, stockholders, and investors who can perform business impact analysis and oversee the recovery plan.
Contact Us About Disaster Recovery Services Today
Following a disaster, it is crucial to have a well-executed disaster recovery plan in place. At Emerald City Solutions, our experienced team can create a disaster recovery plan that is comprehensive and cost-effective. Contact us today at 206-340-1616 for a free IT assessment and to learn more about our disaster recovery vs business continuity services!