El Niño Disaster Recovery Plan

According to an updated forecast released in early September 2015, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) stated that El Niño may last well into 2016.

El Niño Predicted to Continue Through Spring

Specifically, NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center says that “There is an approximately 95% chance that El Niño will continue through Northern Hemisphere winter 2015-16, gradually weakening through spring 2016.”

El Niño is a weather phenomenon that consists of a periodic warming in sea-surface temperatures across the central and east-central equatorial Pacific. This can lead to changes in average rainfall, air pressure, wind, thunderstorm, and hurricane activity.

Disconnecting El Niño and Disaster

So what does this prediction mean for businesses concerned with disaster recovery? It’s time to make sure your disaster recovery plan is up to date. Disasters like hurricanes can instantly disable the transmission of data or cause irreparable damage to IT systems that store critical data, and mitigating those problems is a must during bad weather. In anticipation of El Niño’s extension, here are 3 ways to make your business’s disaster recovery protocol more effective.

Choose a partner in a safe location.

According to Chad Kissinger, OnRamp’s founder and HIPAA expert, one of the most important parts of choosing a DR service partner is location. “When disasters strike,” says Kissinger, “it is essential for businesses to establish effective IT partners in remote locations, to ensure the availability of data operations.” If your business is on the coast, partnering with a remote provider as a secondary site for DR may be the smart thing to do.

Make it part of your business continuity plan.

Disaster recovery is often most effective when it is part of a larger plan–a business continuity plan. DR is specifically about the storage, securing, and recovery of data, while business continuity addresses the greater needs of recovering a business’s critical processes. Making sure that both plans are robust and in sync is imperative in the preparedness process.

Test, test, test!

There’s no way to know if a DR plan works until you test it–and you don’t want that test to be during the actual disaster. Though an annual full-scale test is standard for most companies, it may be best to do quarterly partial testing. Testing your DR plan will allow you to identify its weaknesses and correct them before a real disaster occurs.

Learn More About Disaster Recovery

Want to learn more about DR? Check out all of OnRamp’s Disaster Recovery Resources.