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Organizational Impact of a Backup Disaster Recovery Solution: Executive Summary
This executive summary examines the organizational impact of a proposed Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution and an accounting package migration for a consulting organization named the Lakota Group. Note, this executive summary reflects an actual proposal but the author changed the name of the organization. Preceding the analysis of the organizational impact is a brief summary of the project and the reasoning for consideration.
The Lakota Group is investigating implementing one of the organization’s newest offerings, a Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution, as a means to ensure business continuity and an accounting package migration to mitigate the risk of system failure. The BDR combines both on-site and off-site storage to guard against data-loss; virtualization provides a facility to bring the organization back up within thirty minutes in the event of a server failure or 24 hours in the event of a natural disaster.
The accounting package migration will move the organization’s accounting functions to a new platform. The current package is obsolete and not compatible with the proposed BDR solution. The new system, however, would be the most current release and compatible with both off-site backup and virtualization.
A lacking component of the organizational strategy of the Lakota Group is the ability to make accurate proposals for new projects based on the actual costs of prior projects. The proposed accounting package will integrate with the organization’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) package to enable such analysis. The current out-dated accounting application includes no methods to interface with the CRM package to provide such analysis.
Periodic offerings of new technology based on client’ needs are a major component of the Lakota Group’s organizational strategy. The proposed BDR solution is one of the organization’s newest offerings and the implementation would provide the opportunity to showcase the solution in a production environment.
As part of the feasibility analysis of the proposed project, the author performed an analysis of the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT). The results of this analysis reveal that the new CRM package adds to the company strength; the accounting package migration would enhance that strength by adding an analytic component. Two weaknesses would be curbed by the proposed project implementation, specifically: An obsolete accounting package and the lack of a BDR solution. Increasing the effective marketing potential of the BDR solution to clients is an added opportunity that would be realized by the project’s implementation. Finally, the threat to business continuity imposed by a natural disaster would be mitigated by continuing the proposed project through implementation.
The stakeholders for this project include almost all employees of the organization as well as clients of the organization. Concerns vary from the company president’s requirement for a good Return on Investment (ROI) to the engineer’s need to receive the necessary resources to complete the implementation. The possibility of increasing the effectiveness of marketing efforts is also a stakeholder concern and the analytics provided by the accounting package should alleviate this concern. Clients of the organization wish to maintain the business relationships and the project implementation would certainly help ensure continued business relations.
Simply stated, the possible impact to the financial health of the Lakota Group of implementing the proposed project is negligible compared to the risk faced by denying project completion. A monthly cost of $300 per month over 3 years for the BDR plus a one-time payment of approximately $1200 for the accounting package is the total cost of project completion. The loss faced by the organization in the event of a server failure or major disaster would range from a minimum of $25,000 to the total loss of revenue and the resulting end of operations for the organization.
Changes to operations management would predominantly comprise including more realistic time estimates for upcoming projects. These estimates would be used for generating proposals as well as scheduling and billing for the time engineers spend on future projects.
High Performance Teams
The Lakota Group presently acts as a high performance team because the organization as a whole works together toward common goals. The organization consistently produces good results, collectively takes responsibility for successes and failures, promotes personal and professional growth of employees, and learns as a unit. The key to operating as a high-performance team at the Lakota Group is the leadership of management at all levels. The independent nature of the organizational model provides for a mentoring relationship between leaders and followers. This type of team-driven effort would face little difficulty with the proposed project implementation.
The Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) solution should be implemented immediately. Implementing this solution would stop a threat and increase opportunity. The mitigated threat is the loss of a server causing loss of revenue; the increased opportunity is the ability to market the BDR solution to new and existing accounts.
Migrating to the new accounting package will eliminate the threat of an imminent server failure and ensure the continued operations of the Lakota Group. Loss of the accounting data in the current state would almost certainly lead to the failure of the business. The combination of the BDR solution and accounting system migration is the most effective means to eliminate the risk.