Seattle Goodwill's plan for surviving floods


Two inches of water flooded the server room at the Seattle Goodwill headquarters a few years back when severe rainstorms caused a storm drain to plug up. The servers were taken offline, two floors of the building were soaked in rainwater, and the recovery cost $1.5 million, which was more than two percent of the organization's annual revenue, according to IT Director Ray Osburn.

As you might expect, the incident prompted the organization to deploy a new disaster recovery and business continuity solution, as Osburn details in a post at Baseline.

After the big flood, Seattle Goodwill separated its headquarters staff into groups at two sites so that future disasters wouldn't force the organization to shut down. File server protection was a critical component of the business continuity process for Osburn. With 22 retail sites dispersed around five counties in Washington state, he needed to ensure that the main office would remain connected to business-critical applications to monitor the stores' sales, inventory and finances.

The solution Osburn chose allowed him to aggregate servers into a business application and then manage availability for the application as one unit. It provides an enterprise-wide view of the applications and IT services, which makes more sense than the previous silo-based approach.

For more:
- see Ray Osburn's post at Baseline

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