Planning for disaster recovery (DR) and synchronizing this with your storage strategy can be a major challenge for IT organizations seeking to optimize budgets while ensuring business continuity (BC). Although hardware has become more resilient and virtualization has increased service and application portability, most DR plans still fail to adequately and cost-effectively protect organizations.\nIT departments are being tasked with creating DR solutions and implementing the protection systems that support them. But without expert guidance and regular procedural testing, these plans frequently become a budget-consuming exercise that fails to provide the peace of mind that comes with knowing that enterprise resources are adequately protected against unforeseen disasters. With today\u2019s heavy reliance on data and technology, most businesses that suffer a major extended IT outage will never fully recover.\nUnderstanding the software, hardware, and storage ingredients necessary for a successful DR\/BC plan is a complex undertaking, and it requires a careful analysis of all the available technologies and products so that a customized DR\/BC solution can be crafted that meets a company\u2019s DR\/BC requirements.\nThere are other ingredients that need to be considered. The enterprise has to make educated guesses about which disasters are most likely to strike in a given geographic region, and also has to determine which data sets can be accessed offsite without violating compliance regulations. Determining which employees need mobile access to enterprise information is a crucial ingredient of any contingency plan.\nChoosing a single-vendor DR\/BC solution handcuffs an organization into a generalized approach for safeguarding enterprise resources, and it severely limits the ability to tune your DR\/BC strategy based on the strategic goals of your enterprise.\nThe alternative of selecting all the software, hardware, and storage ingredients internally is more attractive. However, few organizations have the time to evaluate all the available options or the real-world use case experience to design DR-tuned storage strategies based on evaluations of the vast array of available products.\nTurning to informed, third-party DR consultants with product-neutral expertise is the ideal way to select the best ingredients for a DR-tuned storage strategy. By augmenting your existing IT organization with expert guidance from DR consultants seasoned in DR use cases and knowledgeable about the broad spectrum of available DR solutions, you can optimize both staff and budget efficiency. Working together, you can select the right ingredients to build on-premises or cloud-based solutions that include backup, replication, and fail-over as you build a DR-tuned storage strategy.\nJustifying a storage refresh? Get SMART! Learn how next generation technologies can create a cost effective model with unrivaled flexibility. Get S.M.A.R.T. today.