My parents are putting my childhood home on the market next week. We’ve spent 3 months cleaning up 33 years of memories, “must keep” toys, and unfinished projects. We’ve scrubbed the kitchen, painted the walls, and power washed the back deck. We’ve taken trips down memory lane all while weeding through precious items to decide what to keep.
I’m sure my husband will tell you that I’ve decided to keep too much. I’ve packed about a dozen boxes full of doll house furniture, Polly Pockets, high school uniforms, and favorite childhood books. Not to mention the 3 foot doll house, family china pattern, and when the house sells, the dining room set. The problem is, we are in the market to buy a house in the next year and can’t take all of my stuff into our current home.
We’ve done the only thing we could do (other than throw my stuff out, that is!), we’ve rented a locker with a storage company.
Storage Companies the Same as Backup Companies?
I never realized it until I signed the contract with our storage company just how similar their physical location was to our data backup internet vaults. Both companies offer all of the same benefits, all the same protection, and all the same set up steps. No, really. I went to Public Storages website, and took this directly from what they offer:
-Different Unit Types
-Different Unit Sizes
-Easy Reservation System
-On Site Manager
-Personalized code to access building
-Ability to get your stuff whenever you need it
As a business class backup solution, here is what we offer:
-Different Solutions for Different Needs
-Different backup amount capabilities
-Easy access to back ups
-Account Manager to help you when needed
-Personalized security for access to Vaults
-Ability to retrieve data whenever you need to
It’s uncanny how close physical storage and online backup are.
Here’s the thing: When we picked a storage provider, we based it off of features and location. We didn’t want the cheapest solution and we didn’t want the minimum coverage, because what we are storing is too important. Sure, my doll house isn’t worth much monetarily, but my father built it for me by hand. Once I had it, I played with it every night for years. If anything happened to it, the money lost wouldn’t matter as much as the love my father put into making it for me, and memories I have of playing with it. It’s not something I can attach a value to.
It’s why we choose a slightly larger space than we needed in a climate controlled location that has 3 levels of security. My stuff may not be under the same roof as me, but I know it is safe. I get peace of mind out of that.
So…What about your data?
It’s this same peace of mind that online backup provides when it comes to your data. Sure, it is easier to put a price tag on your CRM system or Great Plains than it is on sentimental items. But if I’m willing to care that much about a doll house, shouldn’t you care that much about your CRM system or Great Plains application?
Your data is critical to your business, from Word documents to Exchange PSTs, and yet so many choose to go with an online storage company instead of an online backup company. All businesses should be treating their corporate data the way they’d treat their personal property: with care and protection. It shouldn’t be thrown into any old online storage vendor that offers minimal control over who sees the information and how it is accessed. Like Public Storage, you want solution that offers a high level of support, management, and security. You need to know that your critical data will always be where you left it.
That’s what physical storage reminds me: To care that much about the intangible data that lives on my desktop, on my servers, and my mobile devices. Just like I wouldn’t place my doll house in a storage unit with no lock, I wouldn’t place my business sensitive data in a Dropbox or Amazon cloud where anyone can get access. I’d make sure I protected it, with the right solution that was designed to keep it safe from prying hands.
Hopefully, you’ll never see a disaster strike where all your company data is lost, but isn’t nice to know that it is safely backed up, in a climate controlled vault, waiting for you to access it?