For those who aren’t aware, a fire broke out in Holborn on the 1st of April. Caused by an underground electrical fire, the incident led to the evacuation of 5000 people, 3000 properties losing power, 8 theatres having to cancel performances and 36 hours of firefighter’s time to bring the fire under control.

3 weeks later  is still having big impacts on businesses that have their IT systems located in the area. Websites continue to say they are working from a single inbound and outbound email

But what can businesses learn from such incidents and how can we use this knowledge to help protect against such disruption?

1. How smoothly will your recovery go? We’ve had many businesses contact us that have been unfortunately affected by the fire. Loss of power and communications (including email) are the common consequence. These companies have been surprisingly well prepared for such events, having invested substantial costs into their disaster recovery solution. Without exception they all have replication solutions, replicating their data to separate sites so they could recover from these. However, what they learned is that recovering from replications actually takes a lot of work, and time. In the height of a stressful situation when their business is unable to function properly, recovering their IT systems from replications hasn’t provided the solution they needed, and they are still without email. What they really want in hindsight is something that can bring their IT systems back quickly and easily in the event of such a disaster. A service that can be switched on with minimal effort and time. Does your solution allow this? It’s a good time to consider when you’re not in a disaster situation.

2. Do you have the IT resource to cope with a serious disaster? Some of the big names on the market seem to offer the latest technology products, such as replication tools. But often they are only suitable for companies that have a very large IT resource that can be dedicated to a recovery situation. With modern replication technologies, they’re mainly relying on your to carry out the recovery process should an incident occur. If you feel at all uncertain of being able to recover your own IT systems quickly following evacuation, then it’s work looking around for a service provider that will take care of the recovery process for you.

3. Have you practiced recently? Now is the ideal time to practice a full recovery of your business. Plan it out, even if it’s over a weekend when it won’t impact staff productivity. The cost of employing a few key members of staff to practice a recovery over a weekend against the cost of your entire staff being unproductive for a matter of days or weeks is well worth the investment. It is guaranteed to improve your disaster recovery plan, and reduce downtime if you ever come across such an eventuality. Of course, if you opt for our pre-recovery service then you won’t need to practice as we do this for you every 24 hours to certify your recovery daily.


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Read how Plan B’s customer was back to full productivity 40 minutes after being evacuated by a fire