April 13, 2022

Libelle IT Glossary Part 7: What is the difference between RPO and RTO?

AuthorDaniel Krüger

RPO, RTO, DR, BC, HA: The world of IT brings with it a number of acronyms that we regularly take a closer look at for you in our Libelle IT Glossary. In Part 7, we take a closer look at RPO and RTO and explain exactly how these two terms differ.

Recovery Point Objective: What is the maximum amount of data loss?

RPO is an acronym for "Recovery Point Objective" and deals with the question of how great the maximum data loss of a company could  be in the event of an IT failure or similar without significant damage occurring. The period from the last data backup to the occurrence of the critical event is always taken into account here.

Recovery time objective: How long can my IT be down?

On the contrary  to the RPO, the Recovery Time Objective describes the maximum tolerable period of time during which the IT - and specifically computers, systems or networks – could be down after an incident has occured. Together with the RPO, the RTO is one of the most important parameters of a disaster recovery plan.

Why and how to optimize RPO as well as  RTO?

Unfortunately, it is not an exception in practice that significant disruption of business operations occurs due to a system failure or data loss. Not only financial disadvantages occur, but also intangible damages such as loss of image as well ascustomer dissatisfaction. To determine how much a disaster case can cost the company, various areas inside and outside of the company should be taken into account. The following points are relevant here:

  • Impact on employee productivity
  • Loss of billable hours
  • Lost revenue from online activities
  • Regulatory compliance obligations

Another aspect are  the development and innovation opportunities of the company internally and externally, this can influence the company’s specific RPOs and RTOs. Additional service offerings, structural and staffing changes, data growth, site development also affect these metrics. Thus, changes in these areas can completely shift targets, making regular testing and review an absolute "MUST" for a successful disaster recovery management.

RPOs and RTOs are therefore also the most critical variables within  disaster recovery management. They form the basis for estimating a worst-case scenario and offer the opportunity to take protective measures or a distaster recovery concept against potential destruction in your company in advance.  

Prevent the worst case scenario with Libelle BusinessShadow®

With our Libelle BusinessShadow® solution for disaster recovery and high availability, you can mirror SAP® landscapes and other application systems with a time delay. Your company is thus protected not only against the consequences of hardware and application errors, but also against the consequences of natural hazards, sabotage or data loss due to human error.

Would you like to learn more about IT terms? For example, what exactly does business continuity mean or what is the difference between productive, development and QA systems? Then visit our Libelle IT Glossary or follow us on LinkedIn.

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