Modify Your Backup/Recovery Plan to Improve Data Management and Reduce Costs

Modify Your Backup/Recovery Plan to Improve Data Management and Reduce Costs

by David Safaii

One of my favorite things to talk about with clients, prospects and others in the industry is the importance of having a well-thought out backup and recovery plan for businesses. It’s just as likely for me to chat with friends and family at the holidays, and at summer BBQs about this topic. Beyond the cost savings of optimized processes, the rash outbreak of ransomware and data corruption has stimulated lots of discussions.

That’s why, when I discovered this recent report from Gartner, I was delighted.

The report, which is based on 1,200 Gartner client interactions and polls, demonstrated that business infrastructure and operations (I&O) leaders need to rethink their backup procedures to realize cost savings and improve backup infrastructure resource utilization. In addition, they highlighted that Cloud services can help their infrastructure modernization initiatives, as they alleviate the burden on the data center backup infrastructure.

Report Highlights

  • Data protection ranks high on every organization’s priority list. However, lack of funding and staffing constraints can pose challenges for IT leaders who want to provide comprehensive and fail-proof services to their end users. To deal with these challenges, organizations need to implement a layered or tiered recovery approach, where backup and recovery is channeled between two or more service levels, each with a different QoS and cost structure.
  • When I&O leaders responsible for storage backup data to a cloud service, they decrease the load on the primary data center backup infrastructure. Storage managers find backup delivered as a service is becoming attractive for a portion of the organization’s data.
  • Bandwidth limitations are addressed through data reduction and network optimization techniques, as service-based features and functionality continue to improve.
  • Organizations are actively considering SaaS and cloud-delivered solutions to protect data in ROBO environments, as well as test-and-development data and endpoints, including desktop, laptop and tablets. Some companies are evaluating these delivery models for regional areas and at least a subset of their primary data centers.
  • Cloud infrastructure as a service is becoming a backup target for licensed software, either by design or customer initiative. However, adopters should ensure that overall costs are not compromised by egress (restore) charges.
  • Organizations leveraging outsourcing and SaaS are comfortable with not owning the technologies used to enable their solutions. Some internal IT organizations will become contractors/brokers, managing not only their own IT, but also multi-sourced IT services from the cloud.

Report Recommendations

  • Re-examine the data and applications being protected, especially SLA terms such as backup include/exclude lists, number of versions of a file to retain and backup retention.
  • Adopt a layered or tiered backup and recovery approach, backing up the lowest tier less frequently; perform fewer full backups for static data, such as every two weeks instead of weekly.
  • Deploy an archiving solution to capture and manage static data, or data that needs to be retained longer than one year
  • Move ROBO, desktop/laptop and departmental, and especially mid-market backup workloads to the cloud.
  • Mitigate risk and improve data availability by using a service as an additional, or DR, copy for on-premises backup as a potential solution. However, both TCO over time and egress fees must be examined when evaluating these services.
  • Assess the criticality of data you would like to move to a cloud or SaaS site before implementing the process, and pilot a cloud-based backup project using less-critical data.
  • Deploy a layered or tiered backup and recovery approach, possibly backing up the lowest tier less frequently. Perform fewer full backups for static data, such as every two weeks, or even monthly instead of weekly.
  • Re-evaluate your data protection plan. If the primary goal of the backup strategy is to satisfy operational recovery requests, then reduce backup retention times to 90 days or 120 days. However, understand that recent malware and ransomware threats may make backup retention below 30 days or 60 days a risky consideration
  • Even if there are operational reasons to keep longer-term copies of application data or month-/quarter-/year-end data, evaluate running a separate backup job and retention policy for that subset of data, so that all data is not subject to the elongated retention.
  • Deploy an archiving solution to capture and manage static data, or data that needs to be retained longer than one year.

If you are interested in chatting more about this topic or learning about how Trilio can help strengthen your data backup and recovery processes, please connect with us here.  

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