kyle elworthy network essentials

Kyle Elworthy, President/CEO, Network Essentials

This is the second entry in a series of Partner Technology Spotlight articles created with the help of our MSP partners. The series’ purpose is to educate our customers and partners about topics that they might find helpful.

The subject here is backup and disaster recovery, which can affect any business – especially those that aren’t prepared. We asked our friend and partner Kyle Elworthy of Network Essentials to share his insights on this potential problem, and how your business should make sure it doesn’t become a victim.

What is the typical size of your customers’ businesses?

It varies, but the sweet spot is 25-50 people.

Do most businesses pay enough attention to disaster recovery and backup?

No, they don’t focus enough on their data and how it’s being handled. Most business owners don’t really consider what their main assets are. Their people are the most expensive asset they have. The second most – maybe it could be first – is intellectual property, or data. They don’t have data storage policies, though some may know that their IT company is backing it up.

I’d say that 95 percent of the CEOs we deal with let someone else look at our reports – they know what we’re doing, but don’t really look into the details of what we give them. How we back up the data is the most important thing we do.

If there’s a catastrophe or a major outage, we need to be able to bring that business back up. If we don’t, 50 employees could lose their jobs, affecting them and their families. Their whole lives could be impacted, and we can’t afford to have that happen.

Do most companies manage their disaster recovery and backup needs on their own, or are they working with managed services providers (MSPs) that don’t pay enough attention to it?

It’s a combination of the two. Often, we’re replacing a single person that has been managing IT efforts. I’ve been in that position – you get to a point at which money is no longer being invested in technology, so you move on to learn more somewhere else.

If someone is stuck in the same position for, say, 12 years, there’s not much motivation to learn new technologies that will help the business improve. People can get lazy, and stop doing basic things. That’s while the company has a false sense of security, thinking that a longtime employee has everything covered.

Think about salespeople, for instance. Are they pulling your intellectual property onto their laptops, or filing it in Dropbox? What happens when they leave – do you know that your data is walking out the door?

A good friend in Charlotte had a salesperson leave with a database with over 2 million contacts of former and current client information. That’s a significant problem for a business owner – you have expectations that things are being backed