Respondents to the international survey reported that on average, they have less than 48 hours to correct outages before the downtime becomes a potentially fatal issue for their organizations, with the largest slice of organizations (32%) reporting anything more than four hours of outage as disastrous.
Despite this narrow window, 19% of organizations have no plan whatsoever for assuring business continuity, with these enterprises most often blaming cost as the key barrier. But the survey also showed that the biggest slice of organizations (40%) spends less than $100,000 per year on their BC initiatives.
"This research clearly demonstrates that a good business continuity plan is by no stretch reserved for organizations with huge budgets - there are many affordable options," noted Bob Williamson, Vice President for SteelEye Technology. "And when you consider how many organizations actually use their BC plan, and that any company without one could be just a day or two from a 'fatal issue,' the real costs for business continuity assurance begin to look miniscule."
Among the more encouraging findings released were those that showed not only that 73% of organizations have formalized BC plans in place, but also that 87% of those plans include a remote disaster recovery site as a failover option.
Yet even organizations with a plan may be slow to adopt best practices associated with business continuity assurance.
For example, although 95% of organizations test their BC plans at least annually, organizations that have needed to invoke their BC plans test their plans more than twice as often as those who have not yet encountered a potential disaster (19 times per year vs. nine). This suggests that many organizations seriously underestimate the likelihood of a disaster, and that only once they experience a threat do they prioritize testing as a regular practice.
As well, while a strong majority (65%) of organizations with BC plans have implemented an automated data replication solution between their primary and disaster recovery sites, the majority (54%) have not yet implemented an automated failover cluster solution, seen by experts as another key component in a comprehensive business continuity plan.
"There is no doubt that companies are more aware than ever before about the importance of business continuity assurance," added Bob Williamson. "But we think this survey also uncovers several areas where perceptions of the barriers for making it happen are a bit skewed and where even enlightened IT teams need to adopt better practices. That said, we are pleased to bring these findings to light as part of SteelEye's ongoing effort to help educate the market."
Answered by both C-level executives and IT technicians with active roles in their organizations' business continuity strategies, the survey examines adoption levels of various server technologies, delves into priorities and costs for implementing BC initiatives and provides a view into common BC practices.
SteelEye's flagship product, LifeKeeper, provides LAN and WAN-based, end-to-end protection of critical resources and enables companies of all sizes to ensure continuous availability of business-critical applications, servers and data. Viewed by industry experts as best in class, the product most recently garnered LinuxWorld's 2005 Product Excellence Award for Best Clustering Solution. SteelEye is today exhibiting its solution for Continuous Data Protection at the 2006 Business Continuity and Corporate Security Show in New York City.
Note to editors:
The full results of the 2006 SteelEye Technology Business Continuity Index are slated for release in April. Media interested in previewing the statistics, including findings segmented by geography, industry and organization size should contact Vice President Bob Williamson at +1 843 532 0355, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About SteelEye Technology
SteelEye is a leading provider of data and application availability management solutions for business continuity and disaster recovery. The SteelEye LifeKeeper family of application-focused data replication, high availability clustering and disaster recovery solutions are easy to deploy and operate, and enable enterprises of all sizes to ensure continuous availability of business-critical applications, servers and data. To complement its software solutions, SteelEye also provides a full range of high availability consulting and professional services to assist organizations with the assessment, design and implementation of solutions for ensuring High Availability within their environments. To learn more about SteelEye, visit www.steeleye.com. We are the High Availability Experts.
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