While making Toy Story 2, the animators at Pixar would save their work on both Linux and Unix servers. One afternoon, while working on the movie, the animators noticed that parts of their characters started to disappear. First, it was Woody’s hat, then his boots, and finally all of Woody. Then the rest of the characters started to disappear as well.
It turns out that someone within the Pixar IT department had accidentally run the “RM*” delete command which deleted about a year’s worth of effort on the movie. At first, everyone thought, “No big deal, there is a backup.” But to complicate matters even more, the backup had been failing for the past month and no one had noticed.
Luckily, crisis was averted because an employee had taken a copy to her house to work on it while at home.
As data becomes more valuable, the need to keep backups and be able to restore from these backups becomes even more valuable. This is especially true for backups around the financial management systems. Super A-Mart, a discount furniture retailer in Australia, learned this the hard way.
The company had setup a mezzanine floor in a store in Oxley, Australia, to house the servers for the backup financial management systems. The setup seemed secure as it was a raised floor and replicated the financial information in real time.
However, in 2011, significant flooding occurred in Oxley that eventually led to the submersion of the entire building. A rescue effort was launched by three IT personnel to secure the backup servers and determine whether the data was still viable. Luckily, through the dedicated effort of the IT personnel, Super A-Mart was able to secure their servers from the submerged building and reclaim the data.
In both of the examples, the companies got lucky and were able to save their data, but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t a financial hit. In both instances, work came to a halt as time and energy were dedicated to solving the problem.
Even short downtimes can prove to be costly. On August 14, 2013, The New York Times website was shut down for a few hours. Surprisingly, during this outage, the stock price fell, Twitter went wild, and the Wall Street Journal dropped their “pay for access” policy in an attempt to win over readers.
To ensure that these disasters do not happen at your company, begin by taking an active approach to disaster recovery. Ensure that nightly backups are performed on your financial management systems and that your ecommerce system has been setup to roll over to another server when problems occur. In addition, make sure that all of this occurs with the proper level of data encryption.
These options are not cheap and will require some financial commitment. Or you could always migrate your financial management systems to a single system like NetSuite. NetSuite is entirely based in the cloud and provides multiple levels of data redundancy and disaster recovery. It also provides a money back guarantee of 99.96% uptime commitment.
NetSuite not only merges your financial management systems into a single system, the disaster recovery plan is included in the price of the subscription. Don’t get caught in a disaster. Contact us to learn more today.