What is your plan in case of an internet outage?
One of the attractions of cloud communications is that you can access your business phone system from anywhere you have an internet connection.
But what happens if there’s an internet outage?
Being cloud-based, your hosted phone system will not work without an internet connection, just as your old PABX would have been down when the power is out.
Internet outages may not be all that common, but they do happen. Most DSL and fibre internet services, including from Conversant, are best effort services which generally don’t come with service level agreements (SLAs) that guarantee 100% availability. So if something goes wrong, your provider will do its best to fix the issue as soon as possible, but will not commit to any specific timeframes.
If your business relies on the internet for its core systems, you need a contingency plan to make sure you’re not cut off from the world in the event of an internet outage.
Your best option is to have a backup internet connection from a different provider. This means if an issue is limited to one provider, you can switch to the alternative service.
A good rule here is to opt for a DSL backup if you have fibre, as the fault is unlikely to affect both networks at the same time.
For even further redundancy, consider having a backup mobile broadband connection. This will cover you if a fault affects all providers in your area, such as if a digger accidently cuts the internet cable leading to your street or building.
With the coverage and speed of 4G services increasing across the country, this offers a reliable backup alternative that would keep your phone system in perfect working order until your main connection is restored.
While it may sound like an extravagant additional expense to subscribe to a second, or even third, broadband connection, consider the cost of not doing so.
What is your business’ tolerance for outages? What would the cost to your business be of being off the grid for a day or more compared to the $80 a month for a basic backup broadband connection?
So perhaps it’s worth considering the expense of an additional connection as an insurance policy against the cost of an outage.
And while you explore the options for a backup internet provider, do keep us in mind…