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The rise of DRaaS

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It seems a tad unfair to me that Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) has been such a latecomer to the acronym party. SaaS, PaaS and IaaS certainly all beat it to the punch and we may even have had the XaaS factor before DRaaS was formally coined – and yet disaster recovery has been at the Cloud party pretty much since the invites went out. It was – and remains - one of the easiest ways of getting organisations to dip their toe in the Cloud water, with its obvious draw of data stored safely off-site in geographically diverse data centres, to be retrieved should the worse happen.

Arguably though it didn’t deserve the ‘as a Service’ tag in those early days as the only thing being served up to the client was a reasonably recent data set – the client still had the headache of getting the platform and systems back up and running on which they could actually load the data. And in so many instances, IT teams didn’t even think in terms of target RPO and RTO, they just prayed that at some point they would be back in business.

Of course, larger enterprises have always had the means to insure themselves against that sort of panicky meltdown, with big investments in ‘just in case’ facilities that mirror not just data but whole production environments. Whole sites can be lost, but operational effectiveness isn’t jeopardised. That option isn’t an affordable or practical one for your average SME though – and yet SMEs’ need to protect key applications and mission critical data is no less great. As our reliance on IT grows, any prolonged outage can at best impair performance and at worst, bring a business to its knees.

So how can the SME put in place sufficient safeguards to minimise downtime and mitigate that risk? At your service! Cloud providers such as Redcentric have matured their DR offering so it is now effectively turnkey, with tailored solutions for the whole stack: network, data centre, security, server, application, data. This is the equivalent of the enterprise’s mirrored site, ready to go, but at a fraction of the cost, thanks to no CAPEX requirement and a ‘pay as you use’ pricing model. High calibre DRaaS providers will spec and test and rehearse and prove their credentials; they will offer an SLA and demonstrate how they will deliver against it; they will consult with clients to determine the optimum balance of RTO/RPO targets and budgets/solutions available; in short, they will envelop your business in an all-encompassing wrap of Cloud-driven continuity.

What you get back as a customer is complete control – control of your environment, of your data, of your DR budget, of your organisational response, even of your reputation. DRaaS may have been late to the acronym party but for SMEs it is a very welcome guest.

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