IT disaster recovery process

IT disaster recovery process

The client

All hands were on deck when we got a call from a new client late on a Friday afternoon. Their current MSP suffered a catastrophic outage that they were unable to resolve, and the client had no access to any systems or data – grinding their business to a halt. 

The client is Australia’s leading owner-operated labour hire business network servicing Healthcare, Construction, Transport, and many more. It operates under a franchisee model, with over 20 franchisees located across Australia. 

Upon receiving the call, we immediately engaged and over the weekend the team completed the following migrations: mail to Office365, Microsoft Teams for collaboration, their File data to Azure Files (delivered securely utilising Azure Windows Virtual Desktops).  

Empyrean’s IT disaster recovery process had the firm operational on Monday. 

Once they were operational and the client’s requirements for Security and Disaster Recovery were determined, Empyrean implemented Azure Backup for Data Protection and Azure Site Recovery for failover to a different region. 

In consultation with the client, we determined that Microsoft365 E3 licenses were the best fit given it includes Windows Virtual Desktop licensing, all the core Mail and Collaboration tools, as well as a comprehensive suite of security services to protect devices and data. 

The first stages for security were focussed on protecting user identities and MFA with Conditional Access was deployed. In addition, Data Loss Prevention (DLP) was implemented with Azure Information Protection and Intune for managing both domain and non-domain joined devices and their applications. 

This will be an ongoing process of continuous improvement with the client. 

IT disaster recovery challenges

  • Severity One outage critically impacted the business operations for 4 days. 
  • Current MSP was unable to help and resolve issues. 
  • No access to data and applications. 
  • Insufficient Disaster Recovery and Security solutions in place.

Empyrean’s IT disaster recovery process

As soon as we understood the client’s situation, we engaged without a signed contract to get them out of a tough predicament. The process we followed was: 

  • Rapidly understood the client’s architecture and environment. 
  • Collaboratively designed a solution with them. 
  • Worked over the weekend so they could be operational by Monday. 
  • Reviewed and optimised the architecture to align to best practices and the client’s Security and Business Continuity needs. 

IT disaster recovery solution

In addition to rapidly responding to get the client out of a challenging situation, the solution provided many improvements over their existing architecture: 

A Cloud solution based on Azure and Office365 

Given their situation, they needed a rapidly scalable platform that would allow staff to work immediately. Azure was chosen as the best platform given their existing investment in Microsoft technologies. 

Microsoft Teams and Outlook Online for Collaboration 

These best of breed services were simple and quick to implement and allowed the client the communicate with their staff and clients securely and efficiently. 

Azure Files for File services 

Azure Files is Microsoft’s managed file service. This is a secure and easy to consume service and facilitated rapid access to their critical file data. 

Multi Factor Authentication (MFA), with Conditional Access 

To secure authentication and identity, we deployed Azure MFA with Conditional Access providing an additional layer of context-based security on top of MFA. 

Azure Information Protection (AIP) for Data Loss Prevention (DLP) 

AIP was implemented to allow the client to have granular control over access to their data and the flow of data in and out of their organisation. 

Azure Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) 

The client had been using Horizon View Virtual Desktops. WVD is a relatively new service from Microsoft that delivers best of breed secure remote access to applications and data. WVD was implemented quickly allowing users to work remotely from any device and any location. 

Microsoft Intune for Endpoint Management 

Given the volume of remote sites and users with non-standard mobile devices and laptops, it was agreed that it was advisable to deploy Microsoft Intune to centrally manage and secure corporate data and applications on all these devices.  

Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup 

Both Azure Site Recovery and Azure Backup were implemented to protect critical data as well as replicate data and servers to a separate Azure Region for Disaster Recovery. 

Improved end user experience with enhanced collaboration and performance 

By migrating away from legacy on premises tools to Microsoft’s modern Workplace 365 services and the Azure cloud platform, the users now have access to the best tools in the market as well as a resilient and scalable platform. 

Cost savings 

Even with all the new services and features we still saved the client money on their monthly IT costs. 

Empyrean’s customer-led approach

  • We take pride in our agility and client first philosophy – we engaged straight away and helped the client over a weekend. 
  • We’re easy to do business with – we helped the client without any commercials in place as it was the right thing to do. 
  • We’re highly experienced in cloud technology and had the expertise to get the client up and running over a weekend. 

The Numbers

Severity 1 outage

Affected franchises​


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