Every organization has specific operational needs. Something that is crucial for one business may be completely unnecessary for another. For your company, maybe losing your internet connection isn’t a big deal and your employees are able to keep pace by picking up the phone during an outage. If this sounds like you, a lower tiered internet service provided by a cable modem may be your best fit. This solution is low cost with high bandwidth (sounds amazing!) but service outages are to be expected (not so amazing). Depending on the issue causing the outage, your service disruption could be lengthy ranging from just a few minutes, to hours or days. For many businesses, an outage means employees can’t properly perform their jobs and their company starts losing revenue.
Even in businesses where internet connectivity is vital and mission-critical services like Dedicated Metro Ethernet are in use, outages can occur. How you ask? Power surges can knock out telco equipment, heavy storms bringing high winds, ice or snow can bring down service, telephone poles can be taken out due to a car accident, or major fiber trunks can be cut or damaged due to construction work. There are a lot of possible scenarios that can put your Internet connectivity in jeopardy.
The good news is, it’s easy to protect your business.
Redundancy is key. Different levels of service can help protect your network uptime in the event of an outage. Higher levels of service, such as Metro Ethernet, can be combined with the same level of service from a different carrier to help provide a seamless transition if one of the connections goes down for any reason.
We find a good rule of thumb is to go at least one service level below your current primary connection. This will provide your business some sort of connection should you experience an outage. For instance, if your business uses a Dedicated T1, having a cable modem connection is a good backup option, especially if your business uses that T1 line to run credit cards.
In a rare (but it does happen from time to time) instance, a Dedicated T1 or Metro Ethernet Fiber connection outage can occur. Metro Ethernet lines tend to be extremely reliable, and carry a very high uptime SLA – usually 99.999%. However, outages can result in the event of a fiber cut or central office (CO) based issue. In such a case, telco intervention is required and the issue is usually resolved within a 1-4 hour time frame. If your business is using Metro Ethernet, odds are the Internet is an absolutely critical part of your business. Having Internet access through a backup service can save your office from the effects of the outage.
But what if all the wiring coming into your building is telephone pole based, and an automobile accident takes out the pole directly next to your front door? Well, then unfortunately even your backup line will go down. In those instances, having a wireless 4G card plugged into your network or firewall would save the day. (We’re planning for the worst here, and hey, it can happen!).
Bottom Line: Make sure you investigate the possibility of a backup line before you actually need it! There’s nothing worse than a prolonged outage that negatively impacts your operations and revenue. If your company can put a dollar figure on losses for every hour your connection is gone, first and foremost make sure your primary connection provides the best and most reliable uptime – then consider the smaller cost of a backup connection, so you don’t have to worry about counting those lost revenue dollars again.
Want to take a closer look at options for backup Internet connectivity that fit your network and budget? Call P2 Communications Management at 703-391-2172 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.