The Run of Technology Through The Years It is a known fact that the world has always embraced emerging and disruptive technologies in its business environment. Earlier, Information Technology moved on mainframe technologies, then came the era of personal computers followed by client-server architecture and now it’s an era of cloud computing. Tech gurus often argue that the next few years would be a wave of cloud technologies.

Of late, IT managers have realised that huge investments in infrastructure have hardly been fruitful. They don’t get the desired RoI and doesn’t meet expectations. It is in this scenario that cloud computing is a huge boon. With decreasing budgets, companies have been looking to shell out on infrastructure or applications in cloud. The most benefited are the Small and Medium Businesses who run on tight budgets.

Data Is Critical Whether it is a mother uploading photographs of her new born, a student saving his study materials on his personal computer, a shop-owner keeping track of his inventory or a company executive maintaining his organization’s financials, no single individual desires to lose data intentionally. Initially, data was stored in magnetic tapes, then came disk-to-disk storage, next evolved the concept of virtualization and now it’s DR on cloud.

DRaaS: The New Service On The Block Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service or DRaaS is one such by-product of cloud computing which takes care of one’s data in crisis or emergency situations. Instead of having a dedicated on-premise DR in place, one can upload on cloud as the capital expenditure incurred is zero and operational expense incurred is minimum.

Within the ambit of cloud computing, companies in the DR area are developing software products and providing services that promise faster and comprehensive results in terms of ability to return back to business at the point where data flow was interrupted, due to an event of natural or man-made disaster.

The industry has observed a pattern of Merger and Acquisition with bigger companies taking over Independent Software Vendors (ISV) or product companies creating volatility in the DRaaS market. This is expected to continue or grow further, as companies are focusing on the mid-market, Small Business and SOHO user segment.

Market Size Currently, North America contributes to around 58.2% of the overall market and this is expected to further increase at least till 2021. In the following years, Europe and parts of APAC are assumed to play a greater role in DRaaS. The major players in this segment are the Cloud or Hosting Service Providers and the DR, Networking or Storage Service Providers. Enterprise and Mid-Market companies are the largest users for this "as-a-service" technology and both collectively account for more than 75% of the overall market share.

Financial houses happen to extract the most out of this while Manufacturing and Government are still two steps behind in terms of implementing cloud based DR.

DRaaS: Be Aware Though DR on cloud looks brilliant in terms of future prospects, lack of knowledge is one such area which poses a hurdle for companies to convince its customers to implement it. IT managers need to be educated properly and the Business Continuity (BC)/Disaster Recovery (DR) organizations are expected to play a major role in order to fulfill that need. Regulation and compliance with BC and DR standards as drafted by Business Continuity Institute, American Society for Industrial Security/ British Standard Institution and Disaster Recovery Institute International are at times flexible and not followed by some companies making customers re-think on having DR in place. This issue needs to be addressed sensitively so that it does not become a hindrance to the growth of this industry.

With good growth rates, DRaaS expects to perform better in years to follow. The industry appears optimistic and customers are ready to move DR on cloud once they are convinced. High investments by technology giants like IBM and Cisco are early sign of companies expecting returns from cloud technologies. Currently, Disaster Recovery-as-a-Service continues to be an infant in the "pay-as-you-use" model, but will soon prove to be a major game-changer.