Hot site contracts considerations with a third-party
Although industry trends indicate organizations are bringing recovery solutions in-house, hot site contracts remain prevalent. In order to ensure hot site contracts are cost-effective and meet business requirements the following considerations may be useful:
• In advance of the vendor selection process, develop and weigh selection criteria.
• Although SunGard, IBM and Hewlett-Packard remain the largest providers of site services, a number of specialist providers exist; therefore, dozens of qualified providers may be positioned to respond. In order to execute a focused vendor selection process, use a Request for Information (RFI) to select three finalists, and a Request for Proposal (RFP) to select a partner.
• Based on a business impact analysis (BIA), define detailed application and network recovery objectives and associated recovery configurations. Share recovery strategy configurations with potential technology partners (following the RFI process).
• Consider a shorter site contract length. Business and technology change frequently, and change orders are often expensive. Shorter contracts may take advantage of the trend of decreasing technology costs.
• Consider an integrated backup communication network and site backup strategy to take advantage of economies of scale, some providers can present both solutions together.
• Ensure the contract provides testing and access rights consistent with internal policies. Consider contracting for assistance with initial recovery actions where critical skills may be lacking or missing altogether.
• Contract for on-site storage of necessary resources to assist with critical recovery actions.
• Integrate data backup solutions with an RPO of less than 24 hours and an RTO of less than 48 hours with the hot site solution to take advantage of economies of scale.
• Include terms allowing termination of the contract in the event a similar internal capability is developed.
Hot site contracts is a form of outsourcing recovery solutions