• Data Storage and Backup | Some Tasty Thoughts

    McDonald’s flagship burger, the Big Mac, just became a middle child. No longer is it just two all beef patties and the rest. They recently announced the start of the Grand Mac and Mac Jr. (CNN). My dad always bought it because of the special sauce. Interestingly enough, the inventor of the Big Mac died this past November. He invented the iconic burger in 1967, and it has been one of their leading sells and a true staple at McDonald’s since.

    While McDonald’s special sauce recipe has been available to the public for a long time, it is still a cherished bit of data. Much like Coca-Cola’s still secret recipe, which according to legend is still on a single page hidden away in a vault somewhere. Today’s question is a “what if?” scenario. What would have happened to either McDonald’s or Coca-Cola if either of them had lost their recipes?

    Importance of Data in Business

    Would either of those companies still exist? Probably not. Would we have the soft drink and fast food craze that we have today if those companies had never been able to fully get off the ground before losing their signature recipes? It seems doubtful. Would the iron curtain have fallen? Who knows? What we do know is that backing up your data is vitally important to the success of your business.

    “The ability to analyze and act on data is increasingly important to businesses. The pace of change requires companies to be able to react quickly to changing demands from customers and environmental conditions. Although prompt action may be required, decisions are increasingly complex as companies compete in a global marketplace. Managers may need to understand high volumes of data before they can make the necessary decisions” (SmallBusiness). Without the ability to access your business data, you risk losing time, revenue and customers. Those are things that every business requires to live.

    Imagine losing the last six months of customer data. How many invoices haven’t yet been paid? How many prospects were waiting for quotes that will now never buy, because you don’t remember them? If you are relying on an in-house, local backup option, you could be in for a cold surprise if an electrical surge hits or high winds cause severe damage to your location. A quality backup has to be immune to the elements and secure from tampering. This causes a unique challenge. Is it safe from fire? Water? Theft? Also, can you access it easily enough that it is of value to you during a crisis?

    Data Restoration

    The quality of the backup is not the only metric to measure. With some of the lower-end cloud storage centers, data restoration can be an even bigger nightmare than the data loss itself. Restoration can take days (if not weeks), which proposes other business nightmares along the way. The solution is to make sure you know who you are getting the service from and to diversify the backup. A mixture of local backups and cloud storage will allow you the most flexibility and speed during recovery. Remember, keeping your business running is the chief goal of data backup. Make sure quality and speed of recovery are your main focuses and ensure that you are still able to keep the doors open and revenue in the doors, regardless of the data problem.

    As mom always says, don’t keep all your eggs in one basket. Unless you are McDonald’s. Then keep your eggs in a basket by the grill. I like that. It sounds like a lot of breakfast sandwiches to me. Thanks to McDonald’s for the cool header image.

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