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Sudden extreme weather conditions can have you running for cover. But what does this mean for your business? Are you prepared for rain, snow, or hail as this will affect the running of your business?

With so much at stake, such as computer assets that hold all your data, you need a disaster recovery plan. Being prepared at all times can mean the difference between surviving adverse weather and failure. While you may not be in immediate danger, it is always wise to prepare for a worst-case scenario. Here are five ways to keep your business going in adverse weather conditions.

1. Backing up and storing critical data

Today businesses rely on the data they have stored to keep running. It is critical to have a backup plan as it would be a disaster to lose it all. When you have a plan in place, you can rest easy when disaster strikes. No matter whether threatened by power cuts or flooding, you have a copy stored for access to restore your data. Do not risk losing it all during an extreme weather event.

Assess your needs to understand  what your high value data assets are. These can include customer information and accounting information. Work out how to store copies of these in the event of a disaster. Even consider working with an established data recovery provider as part of a disaster recovery plan. It is worth working with this sort of company as it will ensure you leave nothing out.

2. Do not overlook critical applications

Do not overlook critical applications in your disaster recovery plan. You will need to access these to restore the data you have stored. Without these applications immediately available it will cause the business downtime. Applications like accounting software and databases you need all the time. These should be available on the cloud and you may need a licence to use them in alternative locations and on different assets. This is especially if affected by flooding and you lose your office equipment.

3. Protect electronic equipment

It is important to protect your electronic equipment and ensure that bad weather will not affect it. Keep computers and phones as well as the cables high and dry by ensuring to prevent water from destroying them. A good habit is to switch off and disconnect all assets at the end of the day. Only leave critical systems operating to minimise your loss.

4. Use offsite servers

Small businesses can protect business data using the cloud for data storage. You can also use a hosted work space as part of your disaster recovery plan. This is a cost-effective way to back-up everything up with instant access to recover it. It also reduces the need to have onsite IT support and gives you instant access from anywhere. Doing this moves the responsibility for protecting your data to your service provider.

5. Hold disaster recovery practice sessions

Hold disaster recovery practice sessions so your staff know exactly what to do when adverse weather approaches. There is no point waiting for bad weather to test out whether your data recovery plan works. It is too late then. Practice sessions trains your staff to act at a moment’s notice. These will also show you if there are any areas left out of the plan so you can update it if necessary.

By planning ahead, it reduces the stress and increases the likelihood your business data will escape unscathed. It also guarantees you can get your business up and running again quickly no matter what happens. Now is the time to take action before it is too late.


Marc O'Dwyer

After completing a Graduate program in Marketing, Marc’s impressive sales career began at Allied Irish Banks, Pitney Bowes and Panasonic where he received numerous Irish and European sales performance awards and consistently exceeded targets and expectations. In 1992, Marc’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to set up his own business, Irish International Sales (IIS). Initially, this company was a reseller for Take 5 Accounts and Payroll software. Within four years, IIS became the largest reseller of Take 5 in Ireland, acquiring four other Take 5 resellers. He also found time to set up two mobile phone shops under the Cellular World brand and a web design company offering website design services for small businesses. In 2001, he bought the majority share in a small Irish software business, Big Red Book. At that time, the company was losing money. The company became profitable within two months, and Marc then acquired a payroll company to compliment Big Red Books Accounting products. In 2003, IIS were appointed as Channel Partners with SAP for their new SME product, SAP Business One. Marc sold his Take 5 business and concentrated on developing this new market for SAP As a result, by 2007, IIS was recognised as the largest Channel Partner for SAP in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa). In 2008, the IIS Sales Manager bought the Company from Marc in an MBO. He launched Big red cloud in June 2012, the online version of big red book, to date the company successfully converts 59% of trials into sales and the number of customers is growing rapidly. Marc continues to run both Big Red Book and Big Red Cloud which now support 75,000 businesses. He is a very keen sportsman, having played rugby for 20 years, represented Leinster at under 16 and under 20 levels, and league squash with Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club for 10 years. Marc has competed in 11 Marathons, including the London and Boston Marathons, and has completed several Triathlons and Half Ironman races. He has also completed six Ironman Races in Austria(x2), Frankfurt (Germany), Nice (France) , Mallorca (Spain) and Copenhagen (Denmark)

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