Four Tips To Evaluating Your Backup’s Total Cost Of Ownership

Data and information are quickly becoming a key part of most businesses.  Without this information, it’s virtually impossible to stay competitive in a digital world.  While businesses may recognize the value of a regular backup of their data, many fail to guarantee that they are getting what they pay for in terms of backup technology.  Data backup is quickly changing for the better with scalable and cost effective solutions for protecting data on both ends of the cloud but businesses can still lower their total cost of ownership (TCO) for backing up important data with four simple steps.

1. Utilize Disks

As the market for server backup has developed, most businesses have used tape as a mainstay in the process.  While tape may have been a valuable tool when your business first began backing up data, it is quickly becoming obsolete as its value as a backup target has quickly decreased.

When disks were first introduced, the costs couldn’t even compare to the low cost of tape, but this fact has been turned upside down over the last few years.  Originally, a GB of tape was one-tenth that of a hard disk drive (HDD), but HDDs now offers lower costs for more space.  HDDs can be purchased in as large as 4 TBs while still coming in at lower prices than the average tape.

Disks also offer the following benefits over tape:

  • Faster backups
  • More successful backups more often
  • Successfully introduces data de-duplication
  • Reduces backup data significantly

2. Purchase a Backup Appliance

Backup appliances provide you with an all-in-one solution to the problems presented when your hardware is not configured and deployed correctly.  Backup appliances significantly lower labor costs and simplify the process of data backup.

Most backup appliances also offer you continued support when a problem arises.  A recent study showed that 93% of businesses surveyed felt that it was important to have constant IT support from their backup appliance.  The problem is eliminated even further with the ability to place one call to one provider for assistance.  Your provider should have the details of your appliance handy and quickly be able to identify the problem by visualizing your environment with no explanation from your IT manager.

3. Automatic Backup

If your IT staff still spends a significant amount of time when backing up your data, you may be investing time and money into a process that should be simplified.  As technology develops, the amount of time it takes your staff to perform a server backup should be decreasing rather than increasing or staying the same.

Although it may not be possible to completely eliminate the time it takes you to backup your data, it can be greatly minimized with backup appliances that provide automated backup.  Most backup appliances come complete with the software that your particular organization requires to keep the environment protected.

As environments become more virtualized, the need for a backup agent is also becoming obsolete.  This allows you to eliminate the time each staff member is required to install and configure backup agents on your virtual machine.

4. Use Your Time to Add Value

Many businesses have a backup process in place that seems to run smoothly and are content with their current situation.  Remember that time is money, and it is likely that your talents and insights are more valuable to your company in other places.  Consider what else you can provide to your organization that is more profitable than data backup that can be greatly simplified with new technology.

Most businesses that hope to minimize their spend and maximize profits should pay close attention to the simple ways they can eliminate time-consuming and costly processes.

Sarah Trell is a recent college graduate and contributor for The Pro Intern where she covers digital marketing, eCommerce, and media.