Each new natural disaster—such as recent monster winter storm Nemo—seems to stir up great stories about how companies were able to keep their businesses running despite the potential for horrible disruption. Many of these stories revolve around cloud-based applications, and how they provided access to critical business information from home or from the local coffee shop when employees couldn't make it in to the office.
While these news-hyped stories get all the attention, natural disasters are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to downtime. Heather Clancy over at ZDNet has an interesting post with data from disaster recovery vendor Quorom looking at the most common causes of SMB downtime:
"While natural disasters often inspire small and midsize businesses (SMBs) to reconsider their data backup and recovery strategies, they aren't the most common cause of downtime.
Hardware and software failures, and human error are far more common, according to data compiled by disaster recovery vendor Quorom from an analysis of its global customer base.
Hardware failure is the biggest culprit, representing about 55 percent of all downtime events at SMBs, while human error accounts for about 22 percent of them, according to its analysis. That compares with about 5 percent for natural disasters.
It takes an average of 30 hours to recover from failures, which can be devastating for a business of any size."
Intacct and other leading cloud vendors discuss this topic with prospective clients all the time. While much of the discussion centers around cost savings of not having to implement, manage, and maintain your own data center in house, there is also the performance aspect of it. Simply put—typical small and medium-sized businesses don't have the resources to provide the robust infrastructure a cloud vendor can offer.
At Intacct, protecting your financial data is the critical foundation of our mission to earn and maintain your trust. This includes ensuring you have access to your data. As a pure cloud-based system, we benefit from a software architecture designed from the ground up for maximum network performance. As our CTO, Aaron Harris, discussed in a previous post we can leverage economies of scale to deliver superior up-time and performance. We can take critical steps most SMBs can't afford to implement to ensure our system is available and operating at peak performance at all times—from using server pools with load balancing to offering world-class disaster recovery.
As a financial software vendor, whose applications are the heart of a business, we can't afford to skimp. Intacct runs in Fortune 100-class data centers in San Jose, CA, operated by Savvis, and in Sacramento, CA, operated by Herakles. These world-class data centers feature:
- 7x24x365 monitoring and operations
- Multiple fiber trunks
- Mirrored RAID storage
- Standby servers
- Redundant network components
- Redundant uninterruptable power supplies
- Parallel redundant generators
- Full application and data recovery within 24 hours in case of a major disaster
In addition, we've built a specific set of operational characteristics into the system that has helped to ensure the highest levels of privacy, availability, integrity, and security for our customers for more than 12 years. And these aren't just casual commitments, we back these up with our Buy with Confidence℠ guarantee and provide full transparency around our real-time system status. Best of all, this guarantee is provide at no additional cost to our customers.
While a natural disaster such as Nemo might help to remind SMBs about the importance of disaster recovery and system availability, these topics are always top of mind for cloud vendors like Intacct.
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