Emergency manuals and disaster recovery plans always at hand

November 24, 2021

Ideally, IT administrators have their hands full in day-to-day IT business to maintain normal operations and keep any damage away from the IT systems. In the event of minor incidents, the fault is quickly rectified and even in the event of a more serious failure, remedial action is quickly taken with the help of the existing IT documentation. But what happens if the documents, such as an emergency manual or disaster recovery plans are stored on one of the failed systems?

Obviously, if large sections or even all of IT is down, no digital data within the network and servers can be accessed. If disasters occur due to fire or damage caused by water, the financial loss may be covered by appropriate insurance policies, but to get a company back into production as quickly as possible, no amount of insurance will help. For this, the IT manager must think in advance about what to do in an emergency.

Tested emergency with the emergency manual

Just thinking through a scenario in your head or even hoping that something like this won’t happen anyway is not enough. Many of the small, hidden pitfalls only reveal themselves when you have actually rehearsed a scenario and played it out completely. With such protections in place, many have also found that it is wonderful to have emergency manuals, disaster recovery plans, contact lists, and many more IT security documents. However, it doesn’t help a company if the only way to access this information was through the IT server environment that just went down or flooded.

In order to protect against such emergencies in the best possible way, the necessary documents or the emergency manual must of course also be made completely available without the internal IT system. Here, too, actual rehearsed emergencies help. Because even if, supposedly exemplary, restart plans were printed out as a precaution and stored safely, it quickly turns out during regular checks that printed-out documents cannot do one thing. Namely, they cannot keep up with the times. In other words, they are a snapshot of the time when the emergency manual or other documents for emergencies were printed. If modifications, renewals or additional systems have been integrated in the meantime, old documentation tends to be counterproductive. In the worst case, they lead to new, costly errors or can at least cause some confusion.

Store emergency documents digitally and far, far away

Of course, all documents can be stored on local servers. But not only there, as the above scenarios make clear. Also, the printed form is no longer an option today. Circumstances in the IT environment change too quickly and too frequently. On the other hand, printed documents can remain in use for several months or years as a last resort.

How to properly handle emergencies caused by a failure

In terms of the idea, IT administrators are already familiar with a similar procedure from the backups they have to make on a regular basis. Not only are these automated, but the backed-up data is not stored exclusively in the internal network environment. In fact, many companies are moving to the cloud for this purpose. On the one hand, this has the advantage that the company no longer has to leave any stone unturned. But with the backup still available in the cloud, data can still be restored as quickly as possible.

The same applies to emergency manuals, disaster recovery plans and similar important documents. With Docusnap, you have a professional IT documentation solution that not only helps you provide the important manuals and documents. Of course, it also has the appropriate measures in place for such cases.

If all types of maps and manuals are created and managed via Docusnap, these documents can also be exported to different formats and destinations. Ideally, there is also a cozy place in the cloud for this, where time-controlled, up-to-date versions of these important documents are always stored. In addition, the documents are even versioned. In the default setting, there are 10 different versions so that older documentation can also be accessed in an emergency.

Minimize the damage caused by an outage with an emergency manual and emergency documents

This enables access by authorized persons even outside the company’s internal IT network and can be an important prerequisite for minimizing damage in the event of an emergency.

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