If you’re new to the concept of business continuity planning, a workgroup recovery center should be one of the contingency plans on your list of things to learn about. Workgroup recovery is when you decide on a physical place to meet in the event your main work headquarters becomes either impossible to work in or destroyed during a man-made or natural disaster. They can be designed by either yourself (if you have the budget), or provided from companies dealing in business continuity services.
Which one you choose is going to be up to how much money you want to spend on preparing for disasters. Many companies choose to go with the provided workgroup recovery centers, even if these get divided up into specific types that can pose their own problems.
You also have to plan in advance on the logistics and whether you and your staff can actually arrive to the designated workgroup recovery center.
How Each Workgroup Recovery Center Works
Disaster Resource Guide points out that hot site workgroup recovery centers are the most comprehensive. They’ll also be the most expensive by paying a monthly subscription to keep it available all year long. Call it a different form of insurance for the assured business continuity of your business.
This isn’t to say you can’t go a little cheaper by providing your own cold site where a computer-ready location is available on your own. Many businesses have more than one location, and you should consider one of those as an available place to keep your business running when a disaster occurs.
Regardless, many businesses simply can’t afford any of the above options, and it may require going to public workgroup recovery centers that may or may not be available. While these are risky and sometimes in makeshift locations, they may have to be an option for budget reasons. They may also have to be necessary if your initial workgroup recovery center is out of commission due to disaster circumstance.
In some cases, you might be lucky enough to have a mobile workgroup center come to you if roads are passable. While these can cost you a bundle, it’s a service that does exist.
For all these cases, you need to be assured that you’ll have everything you need to keep your business running so there isn’t any downtime. This means Internet, computers running the same operating system you run, and all the peripherals you normally use. It also means that your data should be in the cloud so you can instantly access it through any place that has Internet.
But what about those logistical problems? Your best alternative may not even have to involve meeting in a physical place.
Dealing with Workgroup Recovery Logistics
Your business continuity plan should always be designed professionally, because contingency plans may be many. One of those plans will be what to do if you and your staff can’t physically arrive to the workgroup recovery center you chose. In fact, you should consider the location from the get-go.
While it may be convenient to pick a recovery center that’s local, natural disasters can make this impossible. Most workgroup recovery centers are located in other states so you’re far enough away from the disaster to be out of danger.
Your most strategic plan if roads are impossible to travel on should be setting up mobile centers in your employees’ homes. In fact, with mobile technology being so easy to use now when used with video services, a workgroup recovery center may not even be necessary. For the safety of all your staff, your best bet may ultimately be staying home (assuming all homes aren’t damaged), and connecting through mobile technology.
In the age of the cloud, home may be where the heart stays when it comes to fighting off natural disasters that get worse every year.