IT Runbooks

Imagine you are in the office and a potentially catastrophic IT incident occurs.  Escalation takes place and the team arrives at a predetermined command centre location.  They get briefed, and each key role-assignee is asked to adapt and implement their section of a comprehensive and weighty IT DR Plan.  Each copy must be kept synchronised with others, whilst satisfying the deadlines for services.  

It’s slow going because the plan is essentially monolithic, likely written to satisfy a need with little thought for use in a true crisis.  Those with paper copies are driven to extract the 20 or so pages they may need, annotating and updating them so the standard responses reflect the situation.  Those with online copies keep track via multiple tabs and paper notes, inevitably diverging from the master plan and placing a heavy load on the team leader to coordinate recovery.  The plan has become a hindrance and there must be a better way. 

Inoni provides Runbooks for each scenario faced, providing a refined plan for responding to a particular failure mode, such as loss of a data centre or corruption of a storage resource.  The Runbooks are backed by Role Cards that provide generic guidance for each key role assignee that is focused by the selected Runbook content.  The outcome is a viable plan to deal with the current incident, requiring minimal annotation or navigation. 

Runbooks are written to provide a comprehensive recipe for recovery from the worst-case instance of a given scenario.  This means the runbook can be diluted and/or accelerated for sub-worst cases with certainty that the organisation will recover in time.  Only the team leader can edit the master copy with team members completing their assigned activities against a single published timeline.  It’s clean and fast with increased certainty of success.  

Runbooks offers significant advantages over monolithic plans, including 

  • Purposeful and specific, dealing with a single type of scenario 
  • Straightforward to select, adapt, navigate, and apply 
  • Brief and convenient, reducing cross-referral and annotation 
  • Sufficiently detailed, pitched at use by a delegated second-in command 
  • Anchored to Impact Analysis-defined deadlines and seasonality 
  • Focused, providing core response guidance and information for the scenario 
  • Subjective and supportive of relevant scenario testing 

Inoni Runbooks offer significant benefits over monolithic IT DR Plans, improving certainty and building confidence in IT’s ability to respond.   


Find out about our IT Disaster Recovery Planning Service