No organisation should ever be priced out of continuity. That’s the message from disaster recovery specialist Databarracks, who has today launched a new guide for businesses looking to create a mass notification service on a budget.
Peter Groucutt, managing director at Databarracks, comments: “Communication is the most important aspect of continuity. It’s something we constantly tell our customers, and the biggest objection we hear back is cost. Implementing a mass notification system for even a relatively small organisation can add up to thousands of pounds per year, and for large, global enterprises this can easily run into a five or six figure sum.
“Even five years ago, disaster recovery services were prohibitively expensive for many organisations. However, with the growth of cloud services opening up the market, good business continuity practices are now accessible to everyone regardless of budget. We believe that no one should be priced out of continuity, so we have designed a simple mass notification service that can be built using existing free and freemium tools, for less than £50 per year.”
The setup of the service is explained in the new step-by-step guide. It uses a combination of tools including communication platform Twilio, automation tool Zapier, and Google Sheets or Excel.
Groucutt concludes: “There are more traditional methods available for communicating with your team during a disaster, such as centralised phone lines or call trees, but these have their problems. Centralised phone lines need to be constantly updated throughout the incident, and call trees rely on the human process of employees making calls – if the chain is broken early on, large sections of the organisations will be left in the dark.
“Our aim when creating this do-it-yourself mass notification service is to show organisations that good continuity practice doesn’t need to cost a fortune. The experts we interviewed for our business continuity podcast (thebcpcast.com) all stressed the same things: communication is critical and good practices don’t need to be costly and complex.
“All you need to set up this simple service is about an hour of free time and you’ll be able to send relevant and timely alerts to your team during an incident. By planning ahead and having a solid process for communication in place, your management team will have more time available to them during a disaster to actually fix the problem at hand, rather than finding ways to communicate with the wider organisation.”