Disaster Recovery: 5 Key Features and Building Your DR Plan

Created by On September 22, 2023 |  Last Updated On April 12, 2024
Disaster recovery plan

Creating and implementing a disaster recovery plan isn’t difficult. If you do it right, creating a clear, concise, and actionable plan can be worth the time and resources.

This guide will focus on the five essential elements that constitute an effective plan, ensuring your business remains resilient and your data protected.

What is Disaster Recovery?

Disaster recovery means predicting and addressing future technology and hardware-related disasters. It includes preparing for such an event and devising and documenting a strategy. The primary goal is to recover quickly from the disaster.

Importance of Disaster Recovery Plan

Before you begin disaster recovery planning, you must understand its importance for your organisation. The two most significant benefits are near-zero business downtime and cost savings. With a carefully planned recovery plan, your business can continue after a disaster like nothing happened.

Additionally, it will save you a lot of money. For instance, an oxygen reducer system will not just save your data during an accidental fire; it will save the servers and equipment in data centres. Depending on the size of the data centres, these losses could reach millions of dollars, which you can save with a DR plan.

How a Disaster Recovery Plan Works?

01 Prevention

We humans cannot prevent natural accidents. We can only avert technology-related disasters, network problems, human errors, and security breaches. To achieve this goal, you must use the right tools.

02 Anticipation

Anticipation is learning from past experiences and predicting possible disasters to plan a strategy accordingly. For instance, you might transfer your services and data to the cloud after anticipating future server or hard drive failures.

03 Mitigation

Mitigation means responding to weak areas after a disaster to bring improvements and avoid future issues.

Some Recommended Disaster Recovery Methods

Following are some recommended disaster recovery methods that every organisation should adopt.

01 Taking Backups

Every DR strategy includes data backups. It includes creating a copy of your data and storing it on the cloud, an external hard drive, Network-Attached Storage (NAS), or offsite. Most data centres use this method for their server disaster recovery plan.

02 Natural Disaster Preparedness

Preparedness is another crucial aspect of data centre disaster recovery and a network disaster recovery plan. Innovative organisations equip their data centres with tools to combat natural calamities, such as fire detection, an auto fire extinguisher, waterproof ceilings, auto temperature cool-down systems, and documented plans to tackle sudden cyber attacks.

03 Cold Sites

In case of severe natural disasters, a company can transfer all its employees to a remote site that is safe and in an unaffected location.

Disaster Recovery Essentials: 5 Must-Have Components

When discussing what is disaster recovery, we refer to organisations’ strategies and protocols to protect and recover their IT infrastructure in emergencies.

A successful DR plan hinges on five core components: data protection, Recovery Time Objective (RTO), Recovery Point Objective (RPO), scalability, and cost-efficiency.

01. Data Protection

At the heart of any DR plan lies data protection. Disaster recovery IT implements measures that thwart data loss and guarantee data integrity. These measures could include routine backups, RAID implementation, or a secure disaster recovery site for data replication and storage.

02. Recovery Time Objective (RTO)

The Recovery Time Objective (RTO) is the maximum tolerable downtime your system can endure post-disaster before it must be fully operational again.

03. Recovery Point Objective (RPO)

The Recovery Point Objective (RPO) signifies the maximum age of files your organisation must recover from backup storage for a seamless return to normal operations post-disaster. Please refer to our detailed articles to better understand RTO and RPO.

04. Scalability

Scalability refers to your DR plan’s ability to adapt to your business needs or IT environment shifts. A scalable DR plan accommodates your business’ growth or contraction without necessitating significant alterations.

05. Cost-efficiency

Lastly, cost-effectiveness is a pivotal factor in DR plan development. While robust data protection measures and business continuity are paramount, these measures must also align with your budget.

Disaster recovery might involve harnessing cloud-based solutions or adopting a tiered approach to data protection, where critical data enjoys heightened safeguards.

Check out this article to learn more about business continuity vs. disaster recovery, the difference and why it matters.

How to Create an Efficient Disaster Recovery Team?

For an organisation to create an effective disaster recovery team, it is essential to keep the following aspects in mind while selecting the candidates.

01 Business Continuity

The team member should be able to maintain business uptime or continuity while the disaster plan is in effect. They should devise a plan based on a business disaster recovery perspective.

02 IT Applications

Once the plan is in effect, the organisation must know beforehand what IT services or applications must be online as a priority.

03 Impact Assessment and Recovery

Various failures in network infrastructure, databases, servers, and application integrations could occur. For an effective DR plan, IT experts would need to cope with such issues.

04 Executive Management

Do you know when designing a data backup and recovery plan, what’s the first thing to figure out? Budget is the most crucial aspect, and an executive team must set the budget and approve the strategy.


In conclusion, constructing an effective disaster recovery plan involves carefully evaluating various factors, including data security, RTO, RPO, scalability, and cost-efficiency.

You can formulate a resilient DR plan that guarantees business continuity when disaster strikes by grasping these fundamental components and adapting them to your organisation’s unique needs.

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