One of the big things about cloud computing is the potential for cutting costs and saving capital. On demand storage and Software as a Service (SaaS) paved the way with applications stretching from cloudified accountancy to sales force and customer relationship management. ‘All things shall move to the cloud’ is the mantra of many, and disaster recovery appears to be obeying the same rule. RaaS or Recovery as a Service is set to grow according to a recent Research and Markets report, with an impressive 55.2 per cent compound annual growth rate between 2013 and 2018, moving to a $5 billion market globally in five years’ time. But what does RaaS change for organisations down on the ground?
What changes is the way disaster recovery is paid for and how much it costs. With cloud vendors continually innovating in terms of service offerings, customers will often see cloud DR costs going down compared to conventional or in-house solutions. New pricing models are coming where users pay on the basis of how much disaster recovery they actually do (for example, restoring stored data), rather than how much DR for which they provision (for instance, how much data they upload for storage).
What doesn’t (or shouldn’t) change is the disaster recovery performance for the customer, together with performance compared to recovery time objective (RTO) and recovery point objective (RPO). To make sure that is the case, customers will need to test their DR procedures (as before), verify the solidity of their cloud RaaS providers, and lock in guarantees of performance with appropriate contractual agreements on the level of service. When these things are done correctly, why should an enterprise continue doing its own in-house disaster recovery? There are perhaps two reasons: one is for considerations of confidentiality (expensive but possible justifiable); the other is nostalgia (just expensive).