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Disaster Recovery Download: Estimating the Cost of Data Center Downtime

Each year the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) declares one week of the year “Business Continuity Awareness Week”

When asked about the actual cost of an hour or minute of downtime, frequently the response is “it depends.” In some ways, we agree, it can be tricky to pin the cost of downtime to one static number when the variables change so dramatically from incident to incident. One hour of downtime at Amazon may be completely different from an hour at Microsoft, Google or a much smaller business. Nevertheless, we still get excited when the experts make an effort to estimate the value of uptime and the cost of downtime. While they may not be scientifically correct, assigning a tangible monetary cost can help organizations better understand the risks of outages.

In this week’s Disaster Recovery Download, we highlight articles that point to the latest estimate by the Ponemon Institute. Enjoy!

The Actual Cost of Datacenter Downtime

This first article by David Chernicoff for ZDNet highlights the survey by the Ponemon Institute that places the cost of a two hour outage at an average of just over $900,000, or more than $7,900 per minute. Of note, Chernicoff writes, “the actual cost, in terms of direct, indirect, and lost opportunity, has increased more than 40 percent in the last 3 years.” While the cost of downtime may be increasing, the study also notes that, on the whole, datacenters have become more reliable in the past three years.

What Are the Costs of Data Outages, Downtime in Healthcare?

We have previously written about the high cost of data outages in the healthcare industry. This week, Kyle Murphy’s article for EHR Intelligence, references the Ponemon Institute’s study from the perspective of a healthcare organization that operates on an electronic health record (EHR) system. Murphy notes that while no EHR company can “provide perfect uptime,” it’s critical that these organizations avoid outages at all costs. Murphy writes, “The downtime following a glitch in the planned upgrade led to clinicians being unable to access medication orders, patient allergies, and other health data.” With so much at stake, preparedness is paramount for EHR companies and healthcare organizations alike.

BCAW 2014: Counting the Cost

Each year the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) declares one week of the year “Business Continuity Awareness Week.” In preparation for next year, the BCI named the theme of BCAW 2014 “counting the cost.” According to an article in Continuity Central, this theme has been designed “to demonstrate the potential cost of not having an effective business continuity management system.”

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More Stories By Josh Mazgelis

Josh Mazgelis is senior product marketing manager at Neverfail. He has been working in the storage and disaster recovery industries for close to two decades and brings a wide array of knowledge and insight to any technology conversation.

Prior to joining Neverfail, Josh worked as a product manager and senior support engineer at Computer Associates. Before working at CA, he was a senior systems engineer at technology companies such as XOsoft, Netflix, and Quantum Corporation. Josh graduated from Plymouth State University with a bachelor’s degree in applied computer science and enjoys working with virtualization and disaster recovery.