1 A Custom Technology Adoption Profile Commissioned By Colt September 2014 Are SMBs Taking Disaster Recovery Seriously Enough? Introduction Small and medium-size businesses (SMBs) have the same challenges as larger organizations in terms of the need to protect data and keep applications available, but they often lack the resources to deploy traditional larger-scale disaster recovery measures. Entry costs and organizational issues, such as defining what constitutes a disaster, lead to a lack of a robust disaster recovery plan. The ability to inexpensively protect data and applications in a cloud will increase demand from SMBs for disaster-recoveryas-a-service (DRaaS) solutions. In June 2014, Colt Technology Services Group commissioned Forrester Consulting to evaluate the drivers, challenges, and importance of a disaster recovery strategy for SMBs. To do so, Forrester leveraged data from Forrester surveys and supplemented that data with a custom survey of 117 European disaster recovery decision-makers.
2 1 Disaster Recovery Is A Growing Priority With more critical systems than ever before, extremely aggressive business requirements, and complexity invading from all sides, having a robust continuity plan is a growing priority. 1 Forrester s data shows 56% of European SMBs consider purchasing or upgrading their disaster recovery or business continuity capabilities to be a high or critical priority. Top drivers behind the need to improve disaster recovery capabilities are regulatory and legal pressures (38%), fiduciary responsibility to various stakeholders (37%), the cost of downtime (32%), and a requirement to stay online and competitive 24x7 (see Figure 1). Despite these trends, 15% of SMBs that we surveyed don t have disaster recovery budgets in place as solutions are seen as too expensive. The majority of SMBs (53%) set their disaster recovery budgets as a percentage of their overall IT budgets, rather than considering other strategic metrics such as potential fines for noncompliance (10%) or as a percentage of revenue (9%). FIGURE 1 Disaster Recovery Drivers Are Shifting Over Time What is driving the need to improve your disaster recovery capabilities? Regulatory or legal drivers 38% 43% Fiduciary responsibility to stakeholders, 37% employees, partners, customers etc. 60% 2013* 2010 Requirement to stay online and 29% competitive 24x7 41% Improving the availability of a specific 20% mission-critical application 37% Cost of downtime 32% 34% Base: 200 global disaster recovery decision-makers and influencers *Base: 94 global disaster recovery decision-makers and influencers Source: Forrester/Disaster Recovery Journal November 2010 Global Disaster Recovery Preparedness Online Survey, Forrester Research, Inc. *Source: Forrester/Disaster Recovery Journal November 2013 Global Disaster Recovery Preparedness Online Survey, Forrester Research, Inc.
3 2 SMBs Lack A Robust Disaster Recovery Plan Many companies don t have a robust disaster recovery plan in place due to barriers to entry. Our study found that the greatest barrier to entry has been the cost of remote facilities, selected by 48% of respondents. Implementation costs for DR features (39%) and additional hardware costs for remote sites (38%) are next on the list (see Figure 2). This has led to the following results: As a result of these barriers to entry, SMBs are not performing the required planning and testing to protect their businesses. Only 50% of organizations surveyed are testing their disaster recovery plans at least twice a year (see Figure 3). With the rise of virtualization, this is shockingly infrequent, as patches are often implemented weekly. Security device managers (SDMs) add further complexity, as they introduce a whole new set of dynamic variables to be managed and often require daily changes to the environment. SMBs are taking huge risks by not ensuring that they can recover after these patch changes. Businesses are suffering as a result. Our study showed that 59% of respondents have experienced downtime. As expected, the majority of these companies lost worker productivity, but idle employees are not the worst of the outcomes that most companies are experiencing. Fifty-six percent experienced a loss of revenue, and another 55% reported a loss of customer loyalty as a direct result of their downtime (see Figure 4). FIGURE 2 Costs Are Barriers To Entry For Disaster Recovery Which costs have been the greatest barriers to entry in the past? Cost of remote facilities 48% Implementation costs for DR features 39% Additional hardware costs for remote sites 38% Lack of expertise or bandwidth 32% Management/IT worker costs 32% Don t know 3% FIGURE 3 Half Of Companies Test DR Plans Twice Per Year Or More Base: 117 SMB disaster recovery decision-makers from the UK, France, and Germany Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Colt, July 2014 FIGURE 4 How frequently do you test your disaster recovery plan? Once a year 32% Twice a year 29% More than twice a year 21% Never, because I don t have time 11% Other 5% Don t know 2% Companies Lose More Than Employee Productivity During Downtime What was the impact on your company of your most recent downtime event? Please rank up to your top three. Lost worker productivity 43% Lost revenue 20% 16% 20% Lost customer loyalty10% 22% 23% Reputational damage 17% 20% 14% 6% Impact relative to compliance 10% 9% with industry regulations Base: 69 SMB disaster recovery decision-makers from the UK, France, and Germany who have experienced downtime Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Colt, July % 14% Base: 117 SMB disaster recovery decision-makers from the UK, France, and Germany (multiple responses accepted) Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Colt, July 2014
4 3 Disaster-Recovery-As-A-Service Is A Viable Option For Disaster Recovery To boost their disaster recovery plans within the constraints of their budgets, many SMBs are now looking to disasterrecovery-as-a-service as a viable option. A number of DRaaS offerings have hit the market with the promise of speedy recovery in the cloud at competitive price points and with flexible contract terms compared with traditional recovery methods. Our study found that European SMBs are considering these options: FIGURE 5 DRaaS Is A Consideration For European SMBs How important is it that your DR service provider should keep your data within your country/region? Is a mandatory regulatory requirement 21% Very important (this is one of our top considerations) Important (this will influence our 21% decision to choose a vendor) Unimportant 6% Don t know 1% 52% Forrester s data shows that 65% of European SMBs are interested in IT-recovery-as-a-service based on virtual infrastructure at the service provider; 66% are interested in do-it-yourself disaster recovery at a cloud service provider. Data sovereignty is very important to European SMBs and is a critical consideration when evaluating DRaaS vendors. Ninety-four percent of respondents stated that the proximity of a DRaaS provider to headquarters is an important consideration for a vendor, with 21% of respondents stating that it is a mandatory regulatory requirement (see Figure 5). Improved disaster recovery and business continuity (72%) is the top driver for infrastructure-as-a-service in general, whether in a public, hosted private, or internal private configuration (see Figure 6). SMBs most highly value security compliance (53%), proximity to the place of business (43%), and ability to regularly conduct full disaster recovery tests (36%) as the most valuable attributes of a disaster recovery provider. Base: 117 SMB disaster recovery decision-makers from the UK, France, and Germany. Responses add to 101% due to rounding. Source: A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Colt, July 2014 FIGURE 6 Disaster Recovery Is A Top Consideration For IaaS How important were the following in your firm s decision to adopt a public/hosted private/ internal private computing IaaS? Important or very important Improved disaster recovery and business continuity Improved IT infrastructure manageability and flexibility Lower total cost of ownership for servers Provides fast, easy resources for test and development Faster time-to-market with new business capabilities 72% 66% 66% 76% 76% Base: 106 SMB disaster recovery decision-makers from the UK, France, and Germany Source: Forrsights Hardware Survey, Q3 2013, Forrester Research, Inc.
5 4 Conclusion Though IT professionals recognize the importance of building out a robust disaster recovery plan, they are often underprovisioning or delaying investments due to associated costs. Disaster-recovery-as-a-service requires fewer hardware costs and offers more flexible pricing (with generally shorter contracts) than do traditional disaster recovery providers such as managed service or colocation vendors, and as such is a more viable option for many SMBs. When looking at DRaaS providers, SMBs value those that can host data within their country or region while also providing regular testing, offering superior resiliency, and filling gaps in technical expertise. By finding the right partner, SMBs can achieve the same functionality while avoid being saddled with high upfront investment costs or paying for unneeded resources.
6 5 Methodology This Technology Adoption Profile was commissioned by Colt. To create this profile, Forrester leveraged its BT Technographics Survey. Forrester Consulting supplemented this data with custom survey questions asked of disaster recovery decision-makers in the UK, France, and Germany. The auxiliary custom survey began in June 2014 and was completed in July For more information on Forrester s data panel and Tech Industry Consulting services, visit Endnotes 1 Source: The Forrester Wave : Disaster-Recovery-As-A-Service Providers, Q1 2014, Forrester Research, Inc., January 17, ABOUT FORRESTER CONSULTING Forrester Consulting provides independent and objective research-based consulting to help leaders succeed in their organizations. Ranging in scope from a short strategy session to custom projects, Forrester s Consulting services connect you directly with research analysts who apply expert insight to your specific business challenges. For more information, visit forrester.com/consulting. 2014, Forrester Research, Inc. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited. Information is based on best available resources. Opinions reflect judgment at the time and are subject to change. Forrester, Technographics, Forrester Wave, RoleView, TechRadar, and Total Economic Impact are trademarks of Forrester Research, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective companies. For additional information, go to [1-RLEMJY]
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