Articles & Guides

Small businesses rank automated data backup & recovery as primary need

Cliff Boodoosingh on May 26, 2009

More than 40 percent of small businesses rank automated data backup and recovery as their primary IT need

Small businesses tend to lag behind in technology, often due to budget constraints.

According to recent independent studies, automated backup and recovery is one of the areas where small businesses are lagging behind. One recent survey showed that 40% of small businesses ranked automated data backup and recovery as their primary need.

Placing it as a primary need should signal to small businesses that they are operating in a potentially risky situation. 

Placing their company data in the care of a single employee with a manual backup procedure is a risky situation. Even if the backups are performed nightly, what happens to the data that is possibly omitted due to human error?

Or, worse yet, what happens when the IT department suffers a tragedy, be it mechanical or human?  

Is the IT department going to be able to recover from such scenarios? If so, how long will it take and how much money is it going to cost the company to get back up and running?

These are questions small business owners must ask themselves when considering automated backup and recovery plans versus manual backups. 

Safe, Secure, and Automated 

By far the most often stated reason for not having an automated backup and recovery plan in place is cost and security. Many small businesses falsely assume that they can't afford to implement such a process, that it is reserved for larger businesses with more capital to spend.  

This is certainly not the case.

Many storage solution providers (SSPs) have processes and options specifically geared toward small businesses. They have online storage and recovery processes that are designed to meet the needs of the smaller offices. These storage solutions require less online space and so they are able make them affordable. 

Other reason small businesses tend to give for not using automated backup and recovery is the need for security.  What they aren't taking into consideration is that not using an automated backup is often more of a security risk than using an online storage solution. 

With traditional backups, data is often left unencrypted on the physical media. This makes it vulnerable to confidentiality breaches in the event that this disk winds up in the wrong hands.

In contrast, many online backup providers have built in security measures to insure that all data is safe and intact.

Many of the top online backup providers today serve both large and small businesses. And many of them use special encryption procedures that make it impossible for the provider to access any data that belongs to a customer. 

When the backup process is automated, it eliminates the possibility human error and frees the IT department time to handle other issues.

This alone saves money when looked at from the 'cost of labor' perspective. Additionally, recovering data is a simple and fast process, again costing less than it would, should the IT department have to try to restore from tape or other conventional backups. 

Small business IT departments should operate their disaster recovery process as securely and effortlessly as large corporations do. After all, both are doing the same thing, just on a different scale.

Investigate online backup providers to see what they offer for small businesses and fulfill the IT department's wish list for an automated backup and recovery process. 

About The Author

Storagepipe Solutions provides online backup & email archiving services for companies of all sizes.

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