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As we’ve moved into a new year and reflect back on the last, one of the most valuable takeaways is how to be prepared and adapt when unforeseen events prevent themselves.
Over the past year, you’ve surely experienced an increased dependency on information technology not only in your personal life, but also within your salon operations – from communication with customers to facilitating social distancing in your facility and everything in between. Now is a better time than ever to reassess your disaster recovery plan. Many of us think “it won’t happen to me,” but if we’ve learned anything in the past year, unfortunate events can happen to all of us. Not sure how this relates to your salon? I’m talking about the unexpected technical disaster that could occur.
Even if you think that the chance of a natural or man-made disaster at your place of business (the salon that you’ve put your blood, sweat and tears into building) is unlikely, you should still have a plan for not only handling a disaster, but also preventing the effects of one. The actions you take before, during and after an unforeseen event can make all the difference in terms of the impact it can have on your business.
Since you can’t avoid some disasters from occurring, there are things you can do to minimize the negative effects on your business and maintain some stability during a potentially tragic time.
As your customer database is the lifeblood of your business, one of the most vital components of your disaster recovery plan should be a regular schedule for backing up data in case you experience a damaging event, such as a server crash. This backup should also be stored offsite – after all, if the location where your server is housed
undergoes a natural catastrophic event, it may not survive. Additionally, you want to make sure that this backup can be easily restored, and that you have a resource available to assist you with the restoration if needed.
Another important preventative measure is to ensure that you have antivirus and monitoring software on your server and workstations to deter a malicious hacker from damaging your computer network.
You may have experience with managing a server and desire to host your database yourself, as you have a high level of comfort when it comes to performing necessary maintenance. Alternatively, the mere thought of being solely responsible for your database can, understandably, leave you feeling a bit vulnerable. If so, you may consider employing a hosting provider so that you have confidence in knowing that you are safely securing your database and that it is being protected against unauthorized access. Your software provider might offer such services.
Over time, workstations and associated peripherals can also fail for various reasons. Have you thought about having pre-configured backup workstations? Do you use peripherals that are imperative to your operation, such as equipment timers or receipt printers? If so, you should consider having extras on hand in the event that one becomes inoperable.
Once you’ve laid out the procedures that should be followed if an unfortunate event presents itself, it’s also important to document your disaster recovery plan – and test it. Remember those fire drills you had to do as a child at school? Make sure to train your staff on your plan, and that it is easy to understand and execute, especially during what might be a chaotic situation.
A solid disaster recovery plan is an easy way to be prepared and alleviate the stress that you and your staff will undergo during an unforeseen technical calamity – you will surely thank yourself when you are able to continue seamless operation without your guests knowing you experienced an unfortunate event!
The actions you take before, during and after an unforeseen event can make all the difference in terms of the impact it can have on your business.
Melissa Damiani is the Sales Manager of SunLync Software, Inc. a member of the JK-North America group of companies. With the company since 2002, Melissa has served the organization in several capacities, and has extensive knowledge of all aspects required to deliver robust salon management software solutions that are designed to enable measurable growth within its users’ ever-evolving business models.
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