Computers crash...it's a fact of business, but most small business owners are unprepared. It's easy to think that it'll never happen to your business or that you already have a system in place to handle this. We know from experience that as much as we wish those two thoughts to be true, they are often not. So even if you have a system in place read these 3 tips and evaluate where your business is really at:
Tip # 1: Have a full back up system in place. This seems deceptively easy at first glance, but we find that many times business owners think they have a full back up system in place, but don't. Your backup system needs to include all devices: smartphones, laptops, tablets, all computers, and even external hard drives. In addition it should include software along with your documents. Check the frequency of your backup, if it's only backing up once a month or even a week you could be at risk of losing some vital information.
Tip # 2: Use services such as Drop Box or Google Drive for access to "must-have" documents.
- Client lists, pending orders, contact information(vendors, employees, clients)
Tip #3: Schedule milestones to check that the back-up system is working. We have heard and seen firsthand the horror stories. The tape was defective. Someone forgot to push backup. Trust us, your business does not want to experience this first hand! It's easy to say we backup and move to one of the other million tasks calling for your attention, but it can lead to disaster. Just like any system, your backup system is not complete unless you can PROVE IT. How often you test the system will depend on your business. At the very least, you should fully test and verify that your backup system is working once per quarter.