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Where Does the Blame Fall When Backup or Disaster Recovery Fails?

Backup recovery, business continuity, disaster recovery: all critical areas that spell big trouble if you’re not prepared. So when the inevitable happens failure in one area or another, is it possible to assign blame to one team or one individual?

No, it’s not that simple. Unless there’s the off-chance that there is a derelict running loose, you probably won’t be able to roll the blame up in a neat package and make somebody own it.

Why not?

Because the very nature of a BC or DR plan is team-centric from start to finish. Interaction and communication among the teams is what ensures success. But it is important that each of the teams have a designated team leader – one individual with whom the final decision rests when things get wonky.

Selecting the DR Team

The most effective disaster recovery plans and programs depend on the people involved. Working strategies depend on stakeholder cooperation and collaboration, combining needs and capabilities to form a cohesive program that incorporates business continuity, security and safety.

Your DR team should be made up of the following:

  • Authorized leadership (to provide direction, governance and operational authority).
  • Organizational expertise (team members who represent the executive, legal and regulatory interests).
  • Operational expertise (team members who bring business operational knowledge and interests).
  • Technical expertise (team members who bring technology and IT management expertise).
  • Administrative expertise(team members who will coordinate and administer DRP activities).

As a matter of "good practice", every DR "team" should "organize and operate" according to a set of defining principles:

  • The team must have a defined mission that is aligned to the IT management vision.
  • The team must be structured in order to facilitate operational needs.
  • The team must operate under an approved charter.
  • Collaboration and cooperation are the keys to success.

And the key is communication. Team resources should be well-informed and well aware of all disaster recovery plan goals and objectives. Any significant disaster event will impact a business as a "whole", so all sides of the business must be represented in the DR team. This is essential to ensure that the actual "Disaster Recovery Plan" covers all the angles (technical, financial, operational and administrative).

If all the teams are communicating and each person fully understands their role, the chances are greatly diminished that backup recovery failure can occur. However, with a diligent plan in place and an equally diligent team to execute it, even a .001% chance of failure can be managed properly if not averted.


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