The Importance of RTO and RPO in Disaster Recovery Plans

Posted by sarahwayne741 on January 27th, 2017

You know how important disaster recovery plans are for your business. Without it, you are risking in losing all of your data for good, which can effectively ruin your business. However, disaster recovery plans require a lot of thought to them to ensure that you have the most effective plan possible. This will let you know some important terms when it comes to disaster recovery so you can find the right plan for you.

RTO and RPO are the two most important parameters when you are coming up with a disaster recovery plan. RTO stands for “recovery time objective”. This is a measure of how long it takes and the level of service for the business process to be recovered after a disaster to avoid as much downtime as possible. Ideally, you need to make sure everything is recovered long before you suffer from any negative consequences as a result of losing the important continuity to your business. In simpler terms, RTO really answers the important question of “how much time was required to restore data after you receive notification of disruption?” RPO, which means “recovery point objective”, describes the amount of time that may pass during your disruption before the amount of data lost during a period exceeds your maximum threshold. In other words, “what amount of time could pass and the recovery plan could proceed reasonably considering the amount of data that was lost during that time period?”

You may think that these are the same principles but they are very different. RTO is all about the real time that can pass before any disruption will negatively impact your business workflows. RPO is used to discuss the quantity of data that has been lost and needs to be recovered. Ideally, you want a disaster recovery plan that will minimize your downtime so that you can continue to work as normal. Any downtime is going to cost you money that you cannot afford to lose out on. Through a thorough business analysis, you are going to be able to find the best objective ranges of RTO and RPO so that your business can move forward from this disaster quickly. These two perimeters are important metrics as part of your disaster recovery equation, which will let you know which methods of disaster recovery are going to be the most beneficial to your business.

Understanding that you need a disaster recovery plan is only half of the battle. You need to make informed decisions when it comes to these plans. You have so many options out there but they are not made equal. You need to take a close look at your business analysis to see what your RTO and RPO company objectives are. Whatever data recovery plan you have in place must test out to fall within the threshold for your business, otherwise you are going to suffer negative consequences as a result of this downtime. Disaster recovery is important but having the right disaster recovery plan is the most important thing.

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