The Met Office has today issued a weather warning, highlighting in particular that while Scotland should brace for heavy snow, the rest of the country may have strong winds and snow in store by the end of the week. For many business owners, this is the time when business continuity plans are put to the test – storm clouds have little regard for corporate policies, so it’s worth considering every aspect of your infrastructure that might be affected. Planning ahead can mean that that you are prepared for whatever the storm can throw at you, and also protect you against too many losses if your business is hit.
Broadband connectivity can suffer during a storm; it’s vulnerable to the elements, telecommunications companies will struggle to send staff for quick fixes if the connection falters, and many more people are likely to be at home using the same network as your office. That’s why business broadband solutions such as a leased line can offer so many advantages. Not only will this give you fast connectivity via a dedicated connection, but it is also monitored 24/7 and has a 4-hour SLA for fixing any faults. Even if the storm does impact this dedicated line, it will be fixed soon enough to ensure that your business is back up and running as soon as possible.
Power is another issue which you have to consider. If there is a power outage, this will impact every aspect of your business and it should be a very high priority. If the power is down at your office, you need backup options. What’s more, you need that backup to be reliable, either a Tier II or Tier III data centre will have generators to supplement any drops in power. (You can read more about the reliability of different data centre tiers here).
Hopefully, these measures will be enough to weather the storm, but if the worst happens and your office is flooded or suffers other long-term damage, the right technology partner can help you implement a continuity plan that helps you keep running while you find new premises. We provide direct access to our customers’ dedicated hardware so if your IT team needs to make adjustments to ensure staff have access to the files they need, they can visit the secure data centre any time. That’s another reason why we are located in a place that has good transport links and is accessible by rail and road – and of course we also have an expert team on hand if you can’t make it to us.
The right infrastructure also means that you can leverage technology such as VOIP which means that even if your team has to work from home or from a hastily hired temporary office, their number will remain the same. This is a good example of how, as the storm approaches, it’s not enough to batten down the hatches and hope for the best. Protection is important, but equally you have to make business continuity plans to make sure nothing of value is lost and that your business will keep a lid on vital operations, even if storm Caroline takes your roof.
If you’ve already been battered by a storm, we also have a range of emergency services and while it’s smoother if you plan ahead, we can help you get back up and running – and we won’t say I told you so.