What’s going wrong with data backup?
Quietly outdated data backup solutions still in use today cause IT teams to spend too much effort on backup and recovery, which if updated, would enable organizations to reduce cost and operational risk. Then more time and resources to be proactively spent addressing strategic challenges such as cybersecurity, cloud adoption/optimization and business continuity.
Organizations are more sensitive to the impact of data loss than ever before. With the explosion of remote working and ransomware, data protection is a critical business priority. Automation, ease of use and central control deliver the efficiencies that reduce cost and risk.
An independent research company asked 3,000 IT pros about their backup; and found that up to 50% of all restore jobs/ tasks fail to be successful. Further, when they were asked “What would drive your organization to change its backup solution,” most responded capabilities, cost and complexity. Only 2% of respondents claimed, “Nothing would drive my organization to change its primary backup solution to a new solution or service,” while a whopping 98% of organizations had a reason to switch.
Survey: Top backup issues that lead to making a change
The 5 Ugly Truths
#1. Industry stats show 50% of backups fail to restore successfully.
IT teams need solutions that work reliably. The most popular reason to modernize a legacy backup is to address this lack of reliability. Older applications degrade, becoming prone to error and can cause complete data loss.
Many solutions lack data recovery verification, or only provide this availability for limited platforms (for example, VMware only). Lack of visibility drives unpleasant discoveries that there’s an issue when it’s too late. Sometimes this is blamed on a lack of training or skills, but if a backup solution is stable, reliable and intuitive to use, organizations benefit from reduced management expense.
—> Solution: Leverage a solution built with a high performance market leader
FLxStore (powered by Veeam) was created because of the ugly secret that too high a percentage of data backups fail to restore. It was our number one priority to create a solution with a high rate of reliability and one that could support faster Return to Operations. It is built around Veeam’s proven and trusted technology. Deployment as a managed service makes it hassle-free. Re-assess your needs and review the capabilities of market leaders. Solutions like FLxStore make best in class technology available at a fraction of the cost of owning and managing it yourself.
#2 Organizations are under pressure to reduce expenses. NOW.
Organizations are under more pressure to reduce costs. It’s less attractive to carry the capital expense of backup server hardware, software and storage. As a capital expense, your organization is locked in for 3 to 5 years with limited abilities to adjust. By comparison, moving to a BaaS subscription service with a committed Service Level Agreement gives you more flexibility and control.
Many other backup solutions fragment functionality with required add-ons, hidden charges and data deduplication promises that fail to deliver. The challenge is finding the right balance between performance and cost-efficiency, and the recovery SLAs realized for the cost.
Less tangible costs which impact the business enormously are the cost of downtime and data loss. Downtime and data loss have a significant, immediate negative impact on an organization’s relationship with its customers and damages its brand integrity. Other costs include training, management of hardware and software, lost productivity from reacting to data protection issues. Our FLxStore option includes a server appliance that we maintain for the life of your service at no additional cost to you. You get world class backup for your servers and, if desired, end user workstations.
—> Solution: Move from CAPEX model to a subscription that wraps everything together
Backup as a Service (BaaS) is the way of the future. The BaaS model provides a predictable operational expense that organizations are looking for. Additionally, by moving away from a capital expense, it frees up capital for investments that are more strategic to the core goals of the organization. FLxStore delivers this by wrapping hardware, storage and maintenance together with industry leading Veeam functionality. You have all the flexibility to chose your configuration, you maintain to eliminate their risk of data loss and downtime while scaling to meet the changing needs of your organization.
3. Information is the most valuable (and fragile) asset your organization owns, yet it is expected to fly coach.
It’s interesting how few organizations bother the value the data they are backing up as an asset. How much would it cost if it had to be replaced? Could it be replaced? Very often, the answer is no. And yet, the press to pick the lowest cost option is immense. Understanding the size, scale and VALUE of your organization’s data is an important step that most avoid. Having that information at hand helps today’s IT decision makers make a more balanced decision on the quality and lifespan of the system responsible for protecting that asset.
Data is powerful not only for its “historical” or documentation value, but increasingly as an active asset that informs innovation and insight to power the organization’s future. The right ROI calculation isn’t simply crunching the numbers of time saved versus money invested, but the value provided by putting your data to work.
—> Solution: Treat your data like the MVP that it is.
Your organization’s data is valuable, and it needs to be agile and manageable across its entire lifespan. In fact the lifespan of your data may outlive the lifespan of your data backup solution. Times change. Needs change, Stop trying to meet an outdated ROI target based on a 5, 7 or event 10 year investment. Making the change from a CapEx to an OpEx for your backup frees up working capital, reduces risk and management costs while providing greater service.
4. Leadership team’s expectations for data restoration is often wildly different than IT’s.
The number one disconnect between leadership and IT is how quickly the organization can recover from an outage. All too often this divide is both technical and cultural. Expectations are often not documented or discussed. Too often there are expectations for return to normal operations that are never proactively reviewed. Under pressure, the divide can become insurmountable.
Leadership needs to be engaged to create a proactive common understanding of the priorities and timing of data restoration and return to normal operations. Sometimes this means that tradeoffs must be made in advance to balance technical limitations with operational requirements.
—> Solution: Accurately align RPO/RTO commitments before the crisis.
IT leadership needs to proactively engage leadership and line of business managers to discuss needs and expectations when an outage occurs. There will always be differences of expectation, and those need to be negotiated well in advance. This ensures the best possible response in a crisis.
- Review the priority of systems.
- Identify which ones may need a failover readiness option.
- Discuss how fast different departments can expect to be back on line.
- Plan how everyone will communicate.
All too often IT does not understand the constraints and needs of the business units, and those same teams don’t always have realistic expectations. Address them NOW. Then, when a situation comes to pass, everyone understands the process and timing of a return to normal operation.
5. Most backups are never tested, and end user workstations are usually not backed up at all.
The dirtiest secret is that most organizations don’t test their backups. With the high rate of failure from legacy solutions, this is a red flag for business continuity and risk mitigation. Additionally, legacy backup systems often lack granularity or the scalability.
If an organization cannot tolerate even a few minutes of data being lost in the shortest of backup windows, then an archiving system can also play an important role filling this important gap. While archiving has previously been seen purely for litigation and regulatory compliance audits, solutions like our OneVault Archiving Platform are now gaining additional value as part of a real time data protection and business continuity strategy.
—> Solution: Audit and test your backups annually, and don’t forget your user devices
Find the time. Audit your current backup system. Really examine its configuration and architecture as well as testing its performance. Chances are you inherited a backup solution that predates your employment. The entire IT team should have a high understanding and complete confidence in the backup system. Too often, like all network items, what was documented at installation, is no longer how it is configured. There are cybersecurity implications as well. While many may choose not to “poke the bear”, you must. If you have concerns, engage an IT support expert who can help you with all or part of this exercise.
Data is the lifeblood of every business. It’s used every minute of every day to make important decisions and crucial operational choices. With data playing such a central role in day-to-day operations, it is no wonder that the protection of that data is a topic at the forefront of many C-Suite minds. After all, they have a fiduciary responsibility to ensure the business protected from threats, and that includes digital ones.
Legacy data backup solutions are no longer adequate. Those systems need to be replaced to reduce cost, risk and provide levels of business continuity that are understood and acceptable across the organization. Additionally, the challenges of ransomware and a workforce that works from anywhere makes it vital that data be replicated automatically to offsite, that data is air gapped, and that user workstations are backed up.After all, it is often the re-imaging and restoration of workstations that can take the longest in an even recovery operation.
If you’re ready to make a change, talk to us about FLxStore, powered by Veeam. FLxStore provides flexible options for server and workstation backup that give you the speed of lochelps organizations modernize their backup and disaster recovery solutions to be ready for today’s business continuity challenges.
We believe FLxStore is a better backup solution. We’d love the opportunity to prove it to you. If you’d like to explore options, ask questions, or request a solution quote, select a time to talk with us today.
What do you have to lose, except your most valuable asset?
Resource page: FLxStore Hybrid-Cloud Backup as a Service
Information Sheet: FLxStore Information Sheet
Quick-Clip Video: The Donoma Data Protection Suite