Have you ever had one of those moments when someone asks you a question and you have that uncomfortable blank stare? Call it an off-day but I recently had one of these very moments and wow was it uncomfortable. A friend of mine, from a WAN optimization company, asked why someone purchases Ontrack PowerControls or any other third party technology when item level recovery tasks can be done natively within Microsoft Exchange and SharePoint. Some may be thinking, what a simple question. I was trying to think of a good analogy to help him understand when it finally hit me.
Recently we discovered some interesting results from a survey (Press release here). Forty-two percent of organizations reported experiencing at least one Exchange or SharePoint data loss in the past year, with twenty-five percent reporting multiple data losses. Whether losing an email, or an entire site, knowing how to quickly recover is the key to business continuity. While it’s true that using native methods can achieve this, you have to consider how well-versed IT is when these recovery functions are not used every day. Does a busy IT administrator have time to learn recovery and restoration methods after a data loss event occurs? There are many other factors to consider, such as space requirements and how long it takes to recover the data before your job is on the line.
I would even go as far to say these third party technologies are like buying insurance. Having insurance protects you when disaster strikes. If that’s taken into consideration, having more tools available when disaster strikes allows you be more efficient, effective and focused on the larger elements of your job. Consider the old saying, “work smarter not harder.” But the most critical thing to consider is if you’re ready when a data loss event happens, or if you will have the time to figure it out after the fact.
After describing these considerations to my friend, the message resonated and I think he saw the clear difference between native recovery options through Exchange and SharePoint, and using a third party technology to speed up the recovery process.