Disaster Recovery Plan - How Does It Work? | Zerto

Disaster Recovery Plan

A-to-Zerto Glossary of Terms



A disaster recovery (DR) plan is a clear set of instructions that allow the employees of an organization to respond to a disaster scenario in a quick and efficient manner. A DR plan is part of an effective business continuity plan and DR strategy.

What Is a Disaster Recovery Plan ?

A DR plan focuses on getting applications and services back online as quickly as possible in the event of a disaster. Disasters can threaten the lives and health of people, can destroy infrastructure, and can disrupt business operations. Rapid and effective responses that follow a well-designed plan are key to mitigating the effects of a disaster. A DR plan should include consideration for many types of disasters, including:

  • Infrastructure failures 
  • Natural disasters  
  • Human-made disasters 
  • Ransomware 
  • User errors 
  • File deletions 
  • Corruptions

From an IT perspective, disasters are the cause of unplanned downtime and data loss, both of which cost the organization due to loss of revenue, loss of productivity, loss of reputation, and loss of customer loyalty. Having an effective disaster recovery plan helps minimize downtime and data loss. 

Disaster Recovery Guide: Everything You Need to Know about DR

Key Considerations of a Disaster Recovery Plan

When creating an effective DR plan, you should consider several key points to help your organization be prepared when disaster strikes.

  • Assigned roles and training. Ensure that the roles and responsibilities of everyone on your IT team are clearly laid out and that everyone is trained on their duties should a disaster strike. Ideally, you should have a backup assigned for each role, but at the very least, make sure you have a backup assigned for key decision makers.
  • Communications. Have a clear plan for how steps of the DR plan can be communicated as they are being executed during a disaster and clear instructions of how to proceed if communications are disrupted due to the disaster. 
  • Remote access. Having a plan to initiate recovery from a remote location is ideal in case you can’t access your on-premises technology during a disaster.
  • Updates. Make sure your plan is kept up to date as changes occur to your organization. These changes may include changes to personnel, changes to infrastructure, and changes to business priorities.
  • Testing. DR testing is critical to both training and keeping your DR plan up to date. Testing makes employees familiar with the DR plan, the plan execution, and exposes any flaws or gaps in the DR plan. DR testing should be done frequently, at least twice a year, if possible, or at the very least, once a year.

Best Practices in Disaster Recovery Planning

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DR Planning in the Current World

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Disaster Recovery Testing – It May Just Save Your Business

Zerto and Disaster Recovery Planning

When you are faced with a disaster, a simple and clear plan can make or break your recovery. Zerto is a scalable solution that can provide your organization with a variety of tools and solutions to help make your DR plan not only simple and clear, but effective and robust. With Zerto, you can see the real-time status of your protected environment from any device and perform a full failover test in seconds so you can quickly validate your DR plan and get back to other business-critical tasks.

Zerto Solution Overview

Other Resources


Resource Center

Discover and access content from Zerto and 3rd parties (IDC, Gartner, ESG, etc.) related to Disaster Recovery.

The Disaster Recovery Guide

Get everything you need to know about disaster recovery in one guide.

Disaster Recovery Blog Series

Get some insights on how DR is evolving and some perspectives from customers about how they enact it.

What is Zerto?

Learn about Zerto and how it can help you solve your data protection and recovery challenges.