Half Prepared?: Business Survey on Disaster Recovery

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This latest Regus survey, which interviewed over 12,000 senior business people in 85 countries, also shows that firms are more likely to have an IT disaster recovery function to help them recover operations within 24 hours than to be able to provide alternative workspace for their staff, should they be unable to access their usual work premises due to a disaster More than half of firms, however, report that they would invest in affordable alternative workplace recovery if the service were suitably priced. Although larger firms are better prepared for disaster recovery (DR) than smaller companies, 26% of larger corporates still remain without a DR facility for their IT systems, and 40% have no workspace DR facility. It is the conclusion of this study that, given the widespread availability and relative low cost of IT and workspace DR, those organisations with none in place are potentially taking an unnecessary risk with their shareholders assets.

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<ul><li> 1. Half prepared?A global study into corporate preparedness fordisaster recovery and business continuityNovember 2011 </li> <li> 2. Half prepared? The latest global business survey from Regus reveals that companies across the world are almost evenly split between those that do have a disaster recovery plan in place for IT systems or workspace and those that do not. The main reasons for failing to have such a plan in place is reported to be the perceived high cost, although national variations are significant. This latest Regus survey, which interviewed over 12,000 senior business people in 85 countries, also shows that firms are more likely to have an IT disaster recovery function to help them recover operations within 24 hours than to be able to provide alternative workspace for their staff, should they be unable to access their usual work premises due to a disaster More than half of firms, however, report that they would invest in affordable alternative workplace recovery if the service were suitably priced. Although larger firms are better prepared for disaster recovery (DR) than smaller companies, 26% of larger corporates still remain without a DR facility for their IT systems, and 40% have no workspace DR facility. It is the conclusion of this study that, given the widespread availability and relative low cost of IT and workspace DR, those organisations with none in place are potentially taking an unnecessary risk with their shareholders assets. Half prepared? | November 2011 | Page 2 </li> <li> 3. Management Summary Naturaldisasters,therisingcostsofdowntimeandtheincreasinglymission critical character of applications have focused company attention towards disaster recovery solutions - yet independent research commissioned by Regus reveals that globally 45% of firms still have no disaster recovery facility for their IT systems. Athirdofrespondents(33%)reportthattheperceivedcostsofdisasterrecovery are prohibitive and more than half (55%) agree that most firms like theirs would buy the option to access a workspace disaster recovery facility if that option were priced at around $100/month. Itmaybethecasethateconomicpressuresareencouragingmanagementto cut costs by reducing spend on DR. However, given the widespread availability of low cost IT system and workspace disaster recovery services and facilities in todays marketplace, this may be an area which shareholders and insurers are encouraged to investigate in the light of this surveys findings. Companiesthatdohavedisasterrecoveryaremorelikelytohavecomputing systems up and running within 24 hours (55%), than provide an alternative workspace for staff within the same time frame (45%). Someinterestingnationaldifferencesemerge.Inparticular,inJapanonly37%of firms have a disaster recovery facility for their IT systems and just under a third (32%)haveaworkspacedisasterrecovery. MorecompaniesinAustralia(70%)andGermany(69%)andtheUK(67%)are prepared for an IT outage than the global average (55%). Lessthanhalfofconsultingcompanies(46%)haveworkspacedisasterrecovery, comparedwith57%offinancialservicescompanies. Half prepared? | November 2011 | Page 3 </li> <li> 4. Introduction Disaster recovery is maturing from being regarded as an additional safety net to a must-have business critical function and reports indicate that the global disaster recovery / business continuity market is set to reach $39 billion in 2015.1 With reports indicating that the average incident can cost up to $ 500,000,2 and Symantec revealing that IT is becoming increasingly mission critical to organizations, with 60% of all applications now deemed mission critical, it is not surprising to find that disaster recovery has made it to the forefront of the agenda.3 In addition to causing IT system outages, however, dramatic natural disasters and criminal damage can make it impossible even for staff to access their usual workplace, severely undercutting productivity unless alternative workspace arrangements can be rapidly provided. In particular, recent global events have drawn attention to the importance, not only of providing rapid IT backup, but also of providing for entirely new premises at very short notice in order for businesses to continue operating smoothly. Fires, floods, burglary, criminal damage and natural disasters will all affect both the technology and the actual workspace where business critical activities are carried out, so although personnel may be able to access information within 24 hours, they may well not be able to return to the office for a longer period of time, relying on home internet connections of varying speeds and no access to office facilities such as printers andmeetingroomsforexample.Largercompaniesmayalsobeabletorelyon their larger property portfolio to relocate staff in the event of an emergency, critically overlooking the fact that offices may be very distant from each other and not provide a suitable space. ThetragictsunamithathitJapaninMarch2011,majorfloodinginAustraliain January2011,earthquakesinChileandNewZealandanddamagecausedby Hurricane Irene are just a few of the natural disasters that affected the world in 2011 halting operations and in many cases leaving businesses with damaged premises and no plan B as to where to relocate their staff. Although these disasters had global resonance and businesses often have operations set up in various countries, significant national differences are revealed when analysing how prepared businesses are for disaster and interruption.1 ContinuityCentral,ABIResearchestimatesbusinesscontinuityanddatadisasterrecoverymarketgrowth,10thMarch20102 Symantec,DisasterRecoveryResearchReport,20093 Symantec,DisasterRecoveryResearchReport,2009 Half prepared? | November 2011 | Page 4 </li> <li> 5. Introduction The cost to businesses, but also insurers can be devastating and a joint report by theBusinessContinuityInstituteandtheCharteredInsuranceInstitutesGeneral Insurance Faculties encouraged the insurance sector to recognise and encourage clients in the development of their own business continuity programmes in terms and pricing of business interruption insurance.4LloydsofLondonhasalsowarnedthat the insurance industry faces significant difficulties after record claims following the Australia,NewZealand,JapanandtheUScatastrophesin2011.Thefirsthalf of 2011 is in fact reported to have been the costliest six-month period in the insurance markets history.5 ThelatestAcronisreport,forexample,revealsthatGermanyisthecountrywhere firms are most confident of their back up and business continuity processes, closely followedbytheNetherlands.TherestofEurope,however,faredbadlywiththeUK and France scoring below average.6IntheUSA,wherejustoverhalfofcompanies testtheirbackupfacilitiesannually(54%),lessthanathird(29%)hadworkathome days highlighting that the remaining companies have no measure of whether their company can continue to effectively operate with employees entirely working from home and using their own resources.7 Inadditiontothis,areportidentifyingtheUSandJapanasthecountriesmostlikely to incur huge expenses due to natural disasters, reports that its emerging economies suchasChinaandIndiathatposeahigherrisktoinvestorsastheyarelackingthe capacitytodealwithnaturalcatastrophe.Gartner,fortunately,highlightsthatIndian companies in particular see improving business continuity in the year ahead as an objective second only to achieving business growth.8MexicoandCanadawerealso rated as at high risk by the report.94 TheBusinessContinuityInstituteandtheCharteredInsuranceInstitutesGeneralInsuranceFaculties,Insurancesectorviewsonbusinesscontinuity,20105 TheGuardian,LloydsofLondonhitbyrecordclaimsfornaturaldisasters,21stSeptember20116 Acronis,TheAcronisGlobalDisasterRecoveryIndex:2011,20117 TheConferenceBoard,PreparednessinthePrivateSector-2011,20118 ContinuityCentral,GartnersurveyidentifiesbusinesscontinuityasoneofthetoptwoprioritiesforIndianorganizations,8thMarch20119 Maplecroft,NaturalHazardsRiskAtlas2011(NRHA),2011 Half prepared? | November 2011 | Page 5 </li> <li> 6. The Regus Study In order to shed some light on to the level of preparedness of global businesses and their take up of disaster recovery Regus commissioned research canvassing the opinions of over 12,000 senior managers and owners of businesses from 85 countries and found that there is a close to 50-50 divide between businesses that have a plan allowing their IT systems to return to normal operation within 24 hours and those that do not. The same almost even split is also revealed when respondents were asked whether their business had workspace disaster recovery ensuring that staff could effectively return to work within 24 hours. We have a disaster recovery facility which ensures our computing systems are up and running within 24 hours Australia Germany UK Netherlands Belgium South Africa Global Average USA India Canada Mexico Brazil China France Japan 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% No Yes Half prepared? | November 2011 | Page 6 </li> <li> 7. The Regus Study Although it is an old adage the most important asset to a business are its people, it would seem that little attention is devoted by businesses to ensuring that staff are provided with a suitable work location in case of emergency. In fact, 45% of businesses globally do not have vital IT back up and even more, 55% are not prepared to relocate their staff within 24 hours of a disaster taking place. In particular the IT systems of more than half of companies in France (54%), China(52%),Brazil(51%),Japan(63%)andMexico(51%)arenotreadytoreturn operationalwithin24hours.Countriesthatareparticularlyunpreparedtofind alternativeworkspacefortheirstaffincaseofemergencyare:Japan(68%),Canada (65%),India(60%)andtheUSA(59%).Whileitmaywellbethathighlevelsof internet penetration in some countries has led business owners to believe that home access is a suitable substitute to the office in case of an emergency, connection speeds may vary, access to office supplies and technology and the reduction of collaborative working could become critical. We have a disaster recovery facility which ensures an alternative workspace will be up and running within 24 hours Netherlands Germany Belgium Australia China UK Global Average France Mexico Brazil South Africa USA India Canada Japan 0% 10%...</li></ul>