5 Reasons To Switch Your Backup Solution or Service

Data protection has changed. Is now, finally, the time you should too? Veeam asked 1500 IT pros around the world what would drive your organization to change its primary backup solution to a new solution or service. Check out this article to learn the 5 answers that came up over and over again.

5 Reasons To Switch Your Backup Solution or Service
5 Reasons To Switch Your Backup Solution or Service

Table of contents

Introduction
List of the 5 reasons
Reason #1: My current backup is unreliable.
Reason #2: Once you add everything up, it costs a lot.
Reason #3: That ROI never became a reality.
Reason #4: My recovery times are slow, and backup windows are long.
Reason #5: This is taking too much of my time and resources.
Questions to consider

Introduction

Most legacy backup solutions in the market today…well… aren’t very good. Spending too much effort on backup, IT admins lack the time, resources and simply the energy to proactively tackle the real business challenges that are holding businesses back and slowing them down. The frustration is real, people!

Today’s backup technology landscape is now more agile and multifaceted than ever, offering tons of options for any size and budget, and consequently making it very hard to make the right choice. These days, IT needs to think not one, but several steps ahead, taking ransomware, vendor lock-in, storage capacity and cloud mobility, as well as unpredictable world economical and health factors, into the equation.

To add a cherry on top, the events of 2020 have now compounded these pressures like a match to a tinderbox. From the explosion of remote working to the increasing sophistication of security attacks, data protection NEEDS to be a priority. Don’t settle for “meh.” You can’t afford to put it off any longer.

If you’re reading this, you can probably attest to some, or maybe even all, of the above. This means you’re likely a victim, I mean customer, of one of those mediocre backup solutions.

It’s OK. Know this: you’re not alone. IT pros around the globe are feeling your pain! This quick read is designed to help you understand the why and when.

Then, the ball is in your court to determine the how.

List of the 5 reasons

Let’s get straight into it. Here is what 1,500 IT pros around the globe had to say when asked this simple question:

Which of the following would drive your organization to change its primary backup solution to a new solution or service?

  • To improve reliability (success rates) of backups: 39%
  • To reduce software or hardware costs: 38%
  • To improve ROI/TCO: 33%
  • To improve RPO/RTO SLAs: 30%
  • To reduce complexity of operational management (e.g. ease of use): 30%
  • To move from on-premises data protection to cloud-based data protection service: 27%
  • To consolidate a single solution for backups: 22%
  • To deploy data protection in an appliance form factor: 21%
  • To change from CapEx to OpEx models (or vice versa): 21%
  • To deploy data protection as software-only (on hardware of choice): 20%
  • To diversify and use different data protection tools for different workloads: 19%
  • Nothing would drive my organization to change its primary backup solution to a new solution or service: 2%

As you’ll see, 3Cs (capabilities, cost and complexity) remain the top themes for switching data protection solutions.

Only 2% of respondents claimed, “nothing would drive my organization to change its primary backup solution to a new solution or service.” If 98% of IT pros having a reason to switch doesn’t scream a lack of trust, loyalty and confidence in their current provider, nothing else could!

Reason #1: My current backup is unreliable.

The most popular reason to switch primary backup solutions is reliability or a lack thereof. This comes from taking 20-year-old code (or even 30 if you can believe it) and attempting to retrofit it for the IT challenges of today. It’s the equivalent of the Winnebago in Spaceballs — absolutely ridiculous. (If you’re too young to get that joke, Google it, then watch it. That movie is great. And may the Schwartz be with you!)

In addition, dedupe databases often become error-prone and can cause complete data loss. Many solutions lack data recovery verification or only provide this availability for limited platforms (for example, VMware only). Another issue is visibility into what is working and what’s not. All too often, IT admins only find out there’s an issue when it’s too late. It’s like discovering a leak in your roof in the middle of a monsoon — not good.

Many companies chalk this up to a lack of training or skills. This is untrue. If a backup solution is stable, reliable and easy to use, then you shouldn’t need a Ph.D. to use it.

What you should expect from your next backup solution is peace of mind and a “set it and forget it” type of confidence. You deserve a solution that’s got your back.

Reason #2: Once you add everything up, it costs a lot.

When considering the cost of data protection, it’s easy to focus on the traditional costs — hardware, software and storage. Some hardware costs can come at a premium when you’re locked-in, and your software isn’t flexible enough to handle alternatives. Many software solutions include add-ons, secondary components or ongoing services, so make sure nothing is excluded from your calculation. For storage costs, we all know someone who has been burned with hidden charges and data reduction promises that never quite come to fruition. The days of simply pointing to a target are over. You need to find the right balance between performance and cost-efficiency and the recovery SLAs you’re comfortable with for the cost. Without any “gotchas.” Those are the worst.

Don’t forget the less tangible, often forgotten costs: downtime and data loss. For example, a recent study showed that one hour of downtime for a high-priority application is estimated to cost $67,651*. In addition, impacts that downtime and data loss can have on your relationship with your customers or damage to brand integrity can be quite impactful — the time, effort and resource costs to not only maintain your backup infrastructure, but also to get ramped up, trained and running at full capacity. Another is lost productivity. Few things are more frustrating to an IT pro than when they are wasting time and energy reacting to data protection issues, as opposed to proactively working on other important projects.

What you should expect from your next backup solution is a simple, yet flexible cost model, where you can use the hardware and storage you want that can snap in with the software solution you like. You should also be able to make a change in your own environment without having to cancel your weekend plans to clean up the mess.

Reason #3: That ROI never became a reality.

We’ve all been there — promised software could do something only to later find out that it couldn’t. Now you’re juggling multiple solutions to cover certain aspects of your environment or your path to simplicity just became more complex. That ROI calculator you were promised drifted away just like Homer Simpson disappearing into the bushes, taking your confidence, budget and reputation with it.

Another ROI consideration for your benefit is data reuse. All data protection solutions encapsulate a great deal of data. In today’s ecosystem, data is power, and the right ROI calculation isn’t simply crunching the numbers of time saved versus money invested, but also the value provided by putting your data to work.

What you should expect from your next backup solution (and those that are selling it) is the principle to “under promise and over deliver” — no sales engineer demo magic tricks. What you should get is a trial experience with YOU in the driver’s seat, available immediately without waiting on a systems engineer to configure it.

Maybe you can even find a solution to help you tap into the power of the data gold mine that you’re sitting on. Like adding marshmallow fluff to your peanut butter and banana sandwich, that extra layer makes all the difference.

Reason #4: My recovery times are slow, and backup windows are long.

Some backup vendors might try to wow you with an example, but when you dig into product breadth — backup configurations, architectural flexibility, snapshot integrations, replication capabilities — reality sets in. It takes time, years really, to build the required breadth.

Another key factor is recovery speeds and flexibility. Often, it’s not a story of if you can recover, but how easily and quickly you can do it. Count the number of clicks it takes you to recover something simple, an email perhaps. It may surprise you. With regards to flexibility, many solutions either lack the granularity for specific recoveries or the scalability for bulk restores.

Some solutions haven’t yet developed self-service restore capabilities, which is an IT pro’s favorite since it enables you to go on vacation, sip out of those umbrella straws you secretly like, dig your toes in the sand, maybe order those jerk chicken nachos that are soooo good — oh my goodness! Pass the hot sauce — all without worrying if a LOB user is going to break everything.

What you should expect from your next backup solution is a proven track record of continuous innovation, built on top of a strong foundation of happy customers. Imagine a product release where users are literally giddy to get their hands on code versus “let someone else QA it.”

Reason #5: This is taking too much of my time and resources.

With backup software, ease of use cannot be understated. So much so, that “babysitting a backup” is a thing. Far too many products in this industry are hard to use and complicated, kind of like the latest craze to substitute every meal with some ridiculous 14-ingredient protein shake. Good grief just eat a cheeseburger! But we digress…

Other solutions can do what you want, but only through scripting or the right level of PowerShell expertise. It doesn’t need to be that hard, and you shouldn’t have to build a workaround. You bought software to do that for you!

Another important factor is your backup software needs to be able to evolve with you, like those adjustable pants we all secretly wish we were wearing for a big holiday meal. If adding a new NAS device or changing cloud storage requires you to change your data protection strategy, spend time re-educating IT staff or lose sleep about whether or not your IT team has the skills to do it successfully, you’re doing it wrong.

What you should expect from your next backup solution is the gift of time — time back to work on other priorities, cut out of work early or actually use that vacation time that keeps piling up.

Questions to consider

Here are some good questions to ask yourself. Or even better — ask any future backup vendor you are considering entrusting with your data:

  • Stability: How often do you encounter stability issues with your current backup solution (bugs, job failures, etc.)?
  • Flexibility: What is your backup storage plan for the next three to five years, and how will data growth, cloud mobility and security risks alter that strategy?
  • Data reuse: You sit on a gold mine of business data within your backups — how are you putting that data to work for you to solve key business problems?
  • Backup/recovery speeds: As business demands for access to data continue to increase, are your RTOs and RPOs getting better or have they plateaued? Where were they three to five years ago compared to now? Where would you like them to be?
  • Ease of use: How much time do you spend babysitting your backups? If that time was cut in half, what would you do with that extra time?

And one more: How is your current/potential backup vendor doing financially? What growth has their organization seen in the past month, year or quarter?

Unfortunately, this question is now more important than ever. In today’s unstable environment, companies that were struggling before may be on the brink of falling apart. It’s important that whomever you choose to invest in has the size, growth trajectory and economic protection to weather whatever rough seas this world throws at us.

Source: Veeam Software

Published by Julie Robert

, passionate about technology, Windows, and everything that has a power button, I spent most of the time to develop new skills and learning more about the tech world because I derive great satisfaction from helping readers eliminate technological headaches that plague their day-to-day lives.