Network downtime strikes fear into the hearts of even the most seasoned IT professionals. Panic and anger usually follow – and for good reason, too.
According to Gartner, the average cost of network downtime is around $5,600 per minute for the average business, which equates to around $300,000 per hour. Note that this is just an average; there are bound to be large variances with your costs based on your industry.
But the key takeaway is that it pays to be proactive with your network.
To build an effective “neverdown” network, you can turn to an experienced managed IT service provider like BEI. We can help you build a network that remains reliable to ensure peace of mind for you… and a flawless experience for your customers.
Here are the 5 steps that we take.
1. Start by creating redundancy with multiple Internet providers
Some internet service providers (ISPs) are generally more reliable than others, but one thing is for sure – nobody has an uptime of 100%. When things go south for them, it’s ultimately up to you to devise a solution that can keep your business going. Don’t get stuck waiting for your ISP to fix the issue!
We recommend having 1-2 backup Internet circuits that switchback seamlessly. With this redundancy in place, you’ll still be able to operate normally even if your ISPs go offline.
These backup lines are temporary until you can get your primary one back online. Backup lines are a critical component of a “neverdown” network.
2. Add SD-WAN technology for control and analytics
A software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) is critical for a modern cloud-connected business environment. In the past, most organizations relied on a traditional WAN to connect users to applications hosted on servers using MPLS circuits.
An SD-WAN, on the other hand, allows for local internet offloading and getting user traffic closer to cloud services. Users get a much better experience for a significantly lower cost than MPLS services – a result of the faster response rate and larger bandwidth capabilities.
Additionally, SD-WAN networks let you easily integrate multiple access providers into each site while allowing you better control and visibility into how your network assets are utilized.
In short – we can get you a faster network with much higher uptime for lower overall costs.
3. Purchase your bandwidth strategically
To avoid network downtime, you need to think strategically about the type of data access method to your business sites. Every single access method out there (like cable, wireless, and fiber) have their pros and cons.
To find the options that work for you, you’ll need to consider:
- The type of business you operate
- Minimum speed requirements for your operations
- Your overall budget
- Your tolerance for downtime
- What’s available in your area
The beauty of partnering with an top-class MSP like BEI comes from having someone in your corner that can quickly identify your needs and consult you on your best options. We’ll help you make the right decisions so you can focus on running your business.
4. Leverage UCaaS to bypass outages that happen with traditional voice platforms
Unified Communications as a Service (UCaas) brings all of your communication efforts together by integrating tools (such as voice, text, web, and mobile services) into a singular platform.
But why is UCaaS a critical component of your unbeatable network?
Because it means having a platform that allows your customers to reach you at all times. With disconnected systems, experiencing a service interruption with different tools meant missing all communication that came through those channels.
On the other hand, UCaaS keeps your communication channels interconnected so that you never miss anything. That means happier customers that get a much better experience in interacting with your company. And reduced network downtime!
5. Prepare a disaster recovery strategy ahead of time to avoid network downtime
This is perhaps the most important piece of avoiding network downtime:
The disaster recovery plan.
Ask yourself this – how fast could your company restore itself if disaster were to strike? No matter how much you’ve prepared with other solutions, you need a “Plan B” for your entire business operations.
Or, put simply, even if you create a “neverdown” network, you must always have a contingency plan.
Creating a disaster recovery strategy includes creating processes to back up your critical systems, creating documentation to keep things orderly, securing hardware and resources to be on standby, meeting compliance regulations, and more.
Modern recovery solutions are more cost-effective than ever. There’s no excuse to let this slip by.
Luckily, BEI can help you leverage the cloud to ensure your business stays up and running 24/7, and avoid network downtime.
How can BEI help your business?
There you have it ‒ 5 critical steps for a network that won’t let you down. There’s lots more to discuss, as each step has additional nuances and pitfalls that you could fall into. Your best bet?
Chat with us today. We can help you create the perfect network that you and your customers can rely on for years to come.