For Kent Hillman, technical services manager for Huber & Associates, the key to implementing a successful disaster recovery plan is clear – make no assumptions.
Kent and his team have helped clients in every industry, from government to insurance to lumber, recover from IT disasters. According to Kent, one of the biggest mistakes businesses make in remediating such issues is acting on guesses, not facts.
“You must take the time to validate what you think – or perhaps what you’ve heard from employees, or even what’s happened in the past,” Kent says. “If you don’t, you risk treating the wrong symptoms.”
Kent and the Huber team have helped companies large and small correctly diagnose the underlying causes of IT-related business disruptions. Using technology like the IBM ProtecTIER® virtual tape library, which seamlessly integrates backed up data with the applications needed to restore it, and Veeam® Backup & Replication™ software, which replicates systems regardless of the origin server, the Huber team helps implement disaster recovery plans that get businesses back online.
Protectors of Relationships
Because IT disaster-related downtime almost always means lost revenue, accurate and timely issues identification is of critical importance. But in some situations, Kent says, the stakes are especially high.
“A recent cybersecurity incident had one client facing litigation,” Kent says. “In such a case, the conclusions reached and recovery actions taken can have serious implications for the organization, the staff and the community at large.”
The need for speed also can motivate teams to act too quickly. In the end, Kent says, this kind of short-term thinking can cost the organization both time and money. Kent points to the example of an unplanned outage of a bank’s communications systems.
“Let’s say an IT provider comes in and gets the phone and systems back online right away. Life is good, everyone is happy, right?” Kent says. “If the IT provider treated a symptom but didn’t address the underlying issue, maybe not.”
According to Kent, it is vital to invest the time needed to identify the root cause of disruptions of service or security related issues.
“In the midst of an IT disaster, acting rashly can threaten relationships,” Kent says. “At Huber it is important for us to protect not only our relationships with our clients, but also the relationships between our clients and their customers. In these high-stress situations, our client’s mission becomes our mission.”
Partners in Knowledge
A key role the Huber team plays in supporting their client’s mission is knowledge sharing. While most IT professionals have expertise in more than one discipline, it is difficult for an in-house team to stay current on every capability that may come into play during a business disruption. Kent says without the appropriate depth and breadth, companies have no choice but to make assumptions.
“All physicians are doctors, but I wouldn’t ask a neurologist to repair my heart. It’s the same in IT,” Kent says. “At Huber, we engage a wide array of experts to look at an environment holistically – from servers to storage, software to network security, and beyond. That access to experience is the key to our disaster recovery success. ”
Email a Huber technical engineer for more information about disaster recovery, or call 888-634-5000.