Disaster Recovery Solutions, Research Paper Example

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Research Paper

Introduction

Contingency planning is an inevitable aspect of any business. Disaster planning is a strategy adopted by an organization in order to attain the previous state of the business before the occurrence of the interruption. Organizational disasters results into business interruptions and can assume various forms, including short-term outages, and long-term outages. The short term outages include; interruption in the supply of power in the organization, disruption in the availability of the business, among other factors. On the other hand, long-term power interruptions include the conditions that interrupt the business for a span of more than five years. These circumstances may include long-term interruption of power, disruption of availability of building, among other aspects that might interrupt the operations in the business on a long term basis. Disasters can occur as a result of man-made faults or as a result of natural forces. This explains the value of analyzing an organization in relation to the strategies to ensure that the plan is compatible with the organization. Disaster management plan is never universal as different organizations, and disastrous situations have different needs. As the consulting organization for most of the 500 Fortune companies, Superior Financial Analysts needs to design an effective disaster recovery plan for the organizations.

Disaster Recovery Plan

The fortune 500 companies needs to plan and forecast the various aspects of the business in order to ascertain the most effective disaster management process. The plan needs to involve a monthly analysis of the products, budgeting conducted in an annual basis, and long term planning process to cater for the losses that might occur in the specified areas. The provision of global risks and opportunities help the companies make operational decisions. This can be achieved through application of business judgment, and financial insights (Pinta, 2011).

Superior Financial Analysts refers to a consulting company that provides services to most of the Fortune 500 companies. As the Project Manager for the company, it is critical to analyze and ensure disaster preparedness in the companies. Research confirms that; small businesses are likely to suffer more in terms of finances than big companies, especially when the small company in context has not undergone a continuity plan. Working with most of the Fortune 500 companies, Superior Financial Analysts has come across varied disasters, which threatens the survival of valuable Fortune 500 companies’ clients (Nollau, 2009).

Developing a disaster plan is a critical step for Superior Financial Analysts as it creates the assurance that the business is going to survive regardless of the hardships. It is valuable for Superior Financial Analysts to understand that they are the main determiners to the direction of the business. Superior Financial Analysts sets the direction of the business by understanding the various aspects of the business, including the origin of the business, the people that are required to ensure that the business operates effectively, and the required resources that will ensure continuity of the business (Quirchmayr, 2004).

Superior Financial Analysts need to create a skeleton plan that will provide the business with the required direction. The subsequent span of 30-60 days requires an organization to facilitate the layer that follows the plan. After, which the Superior Financial Analysts requires to fill in the blanks in the span of the next six months. This project is quite huge, which is quite demanding at the start. However, Superior Financial Analysts, in the process of undertaking the preparedness tasks needs to estimate the possible disasters, which might hinder the profitability and continuity of the business for its clients. These incidents include; flood, fire, anthrax, bomb threats, violence in the workplace, the loss of key employees, through accidents that might result into deaths, and hurricane among other occurrences in the organization.  When such occurrences takes place, the key stakeholders of Superior Financial Analysts needs to, come up with a contingency plan that fits the entire situation. There are instances when the unexpected process, which consumes a lot of time for the organization have unexpected advantages (Clark et al., 2010).

Disaster recovery plan Short-term outages

The process of creating a contingency plan for Superior Financial Analysts, especially, in case of short-term outages can help the organization get through short-term interruptions in business operations. Prior to designing a plan, Superior Financial Analysts are encouraged to analyze the most critical aspects of the business.  This analysis is conducted with an aim of making the business efficient. A practical instance can occur when; the management team realizes that there are automation opportunities in the process of reviewing the main generators of revenue in the organization, and the main vulnerable areas of the revenues.

The main step of coming up with a plan for Superior Financial Analysts is to create a team. The formed team will be responsible for contingency planning in managing short-term fire in the company for a span of six months. The span can extend to as long as possible provided; the team members come up with an effective plan. There is a need to invite the people that; will ensure development of variety of aspects, and ideas that can threaten the continuity of the organization. This is because some instances require the availability of a facility manager, or any other person with detailed information, which are required in the ensuring fire safety in the organization. The designed by Superior Financial Analysts team needs to encourage participation of all employees, including the managers at the high level of the organization, representatives in most of the departments in the organization, and the entire ream of Human Resource Managers, including the representatives.

Secondly, Superior Financial Analysts needs to maintain a company roster in order to attain an effective plan in managing short-term outrages, including power supply outrages and disruption in the availability of the organization. The main aim of the roster is to ensure effective communication with each other (Clark, 2011). The employees at Superior Financial Analysts need to provide the employer with their detailed information in order to ensure easy trace of an individual in case of mishap in the organization. This roster also ensures effective communication in order to sort issues related to shortage in power supply in case it mistakenly occurs in an organization. Maintaining a good relationship the power supply department in the organization and with the clients’ information also helps ensure continuity of the business, when such instances arise. The management can also devise a backup plan ensure effective power supply in the organization.

Power outages can also be analyzed through effective understanding of the frequency of power at Superior Financial Analysts. It is also critical to note the duration of such outages when they occur (Wadle, 2005). Understanding the number of feeds operating within the facility is a valuable step in ensuring disaster preparedness. The power system can also be made redundant in order to ensure effective control of power outages.

Thirdly, it remains critical for Superior Financial Analysts to determine a chain of command. Superior Financial Analysts have critical business clients. This implies that; the organization needs to take precautions, which will ensure continuity incase anything happens to the CEO of Superior Financial Analysts. Preparations include accidents which makes a certain employee incompetent in his roles. This type of preparation needs to be conducted earlier in order to ensure an effective chain of authority and command in the organization (Clark, 2011). This plays a vital role in ensuring replacement of the departed members in the Superior Financial Analysts.

Power supply interruption and unavailable building in the Long-Run

Long-term risk recovery procedures are risks analyzed in the long-run. Such risks can take at least five years. Organizations need to effectively check on the short-term power supply in order to avoid long-term disaster losses. External factors such as inadequate supply of power in the country can result into long-term power interruptions (Pinta, 2011). It is also critical to evaluate the effects and cause of unavailable buildings in the organization. This can be understood by undertaking the long-term scoring procedures.

Conducting a risk analysis provides Superior Financial Analysts with a likelihood of occurrence of a risky event.  The business needs to understand the loss that will be experienced by the organization in case such an event takes place, and the amount and the form of mitigation that is required (Nollau, 2009). These are all variables that call for varied permutations. Superior Financial Analysts need to conduct constant evaluation and risk assessment in order to come up with an operational disaster recovery plan. The main areas that need testing are analyzed, and highlighted. In case of changes in the organization; the effect is revised, and updated. The personnel in the organization also need to undergo training to attain the prevailing strategies of ensuring effective disaster management.

Superior Financial Analysts needs to understand that continuity of business does not only rely on IT issues.

However, organization needs to understand that; issues involved with access inside the business, external threats, and power supplies affects the well-being of an organizational performance. As an organization that offers services to Fortune 500, Superior Financial Analysts needs to have an effective understanding of the processes that are critical to the continuity of a business. The areas that have interrelations need to be highlighted and understood. There is need for Superior Financial Analysts to separate long-term continuity of a business with the disaster recovery responsibilities (Quirchmayr, 2004).

Identification of specific crisis

The destruction of facilities, including systems, and buildings can be damaged by disaster, which might be either natural or man-made losses such a situation. In this case, the recovery process can never be feasible in short-term. Assessing of the risk of a disaster needs to be backed up with critical decisions, which are required to determine, and list the possible effects of the decisions (Clark et al., 2010). These specific measures are used to make critical decisions on the recovery process of the disaster. There are usually possible implications, which hold that one cause leads to varied disasters as specified below. People and resources are sometimes excluded from these losses.

The diagram below represents an example of one cause and varied outcomes

The main aim of the above demonstration is to develop the entities list, which has been affected by the loss, which was realized through disaster. This loss can be corrected using the disaster recovery plan. Disasters like earthquakes can disrupt office facility, telephone systems, operation of staff, and data system (Wadle, 2005).

Responsibility during the time of crisis

Superior Financial Analysts can correct the disaster situation through understanding the activities carried out in the organization, and the interdependence and interconnection of the resources. This will enable Superior Financial Analysts to assess the critical areas in the organization such as the equipment and physical space, the procedure applicable during operations, contingency planning, and the integrity of data. Further, the management needs to understand how all the major areas of the organization will be affected in case a disaster arises. There is the need to come up with a recovery plan that incorporate the short-term process into the long-term process. At this stage the organization needs to decide on how to come up with a plan, which will make the business return to is normal operational process. This is a critical stage as the organization needs to come up with a strategy that prioritizes the functions that needs to be revived in an effort to resume with the normal businesses. Superior Financial Analysts can achieve these changes by consistently testing, maintaining, and updating the plans required to comply with the changes in the business (Clark, 2011).

Action for recovery

The earthquake can affect varied critical areas, including the space in the office, the staffs in the organization, data system and destruction of desktops, telecom failures, and also power interruptions. This means that the company needs to spread the actions required to restore the organization to the state it was before the occurrence of the disaster over a period of time.  In case two or more disasters affect the organizations at the same time there is need to determine the magnitude, and the effect of each entity. The table below represents the entity with the most effects.

Milestones and the timeline for recovery

There is also the need to come up with the list that highlights the entities that are often affected by failure in different types of disasters. After which there is need to come up with the tolerance limit of the down time (Pinta, 2011). The information is critical in the preparation for the recovery sequence in the process of coming up with the sequence of recovery. The entities with less tolerance in terms of downtime need to be provided with higher priorities to ensure recovery.

The cost realized during downtime tolerance is equaled to one metric in terms of evaluation. The investment required in the process of ensuring the recovery plan for disaster is the cost of downtime. This cost can be separated into intangible and tangible costs.  Tangible costs refer to the costs that result from the interruptions of business paratedae, loss of productivity and revenue. On the other hand, intangible costs refer to lost opportunities, especially when customers decide to approach competitors, similar factors, and the loss of reputation. The dependency factor also remains critical for the recovery process. For instance, the repair of the data system depends on power restoration (Quirchmayr, 2004).

Guidelines for testing the plan

Once the process is complete the disaster plan needs to undergo tests. These tests are carried out in the execution phase. The operations need to be taken back to the original facility the moments they are free from the after effects of the disaster. The execution point is then shut down. The original system facility is then observed to determine whether there are recoveries (Clark et al., 2010). If there are no recoveries the system goes through rebuilding. This implies that the reconstitution phase can last for few months, weeks or even days. The time limit significantly relies on the extent of destruction in the site.

References

Clark, A. J., Holliday, P., Chau, R., Eisenberg, H., & Chau, M. (2010). Security Technology, Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity. (T.-hoon Kim, W.-chi Fang, M. K. Khan, K. P. Arnett, H.-jo Kang, & D. Ślęzak, Eds.)Security Technology, Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity, Communications in Computer and Information Science, Volume 122. ISBN 978-3-642-17609-8. Springer Berlin Heidelberg, 2010, p. 250 (Vol. 122, p. 250). Springer Berlin Heidelberg. Retrieved from http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2010stdr.conf..250C

Clark, S. (2011). VMware Disaster Recovery Planning : Essential Checklist. Complexity.

Nollau, B. (2009). Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity. Journal of GXP Compliance, 13(3), 51-58.

Pinta, J. (2011). Disaster Recovery Planning as part of Business Continuity Management – ProQuest. Agris on-line Papers in Economics and Informatics. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/920099681

Quirchmayr, G. (2004). Survivability and Business Continuity Management. Proceedings of the second workshop on Australasian information security Data Mining and Web Intelligence and Software Internationalisation Volume 32 (p. 3). Ieee. Retrieved from http://portal.acm.org/citation.cfm?id=976440.976441

Wadle, J. (2005). Business Continuity Planning and Disaster Recovery. Financial Times, 4(3), 769-834. Elsevier Press. Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=P5FviJGcYfMC&oi=fnd&pg=PA3&dq=Disaster+Recovery+and+Business+Continuity&ots=pKXEXE8Yr_&sig=eECd4NzV6599EqiFEFMQKiRca3c

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