Today’s BT failure highlights the importance of your internet connectivity and shows the impact that not having your internet has on your business.
Most of London has been hit, along with a corridor reaching up as far as Manchester.
If you lose your internet connection, what are your options?
- You sit there doing nothing and waiting for the connection to come back up
- You join the crowds at your local coffee shop and pray it’s not too loud for you to get some work done.
- You go home and work from there, assuming your kids aren’t monopolizing the bandwidth
- You can tether to your phone and pray you don’t use up all your allocation. At £6.50 per MB afterwards, you could face a hefty bill.
- Your backup solution automatically fails over and you keep working.
Let’s look at the implications of these options:
Sitting doing almost nothing will cost you, on average, £200 per user per day (your average daily wage x 1.4 – to include other business costs) and that doesn’t include the opportunity costs for lost sales.
Dependent upon the size of your team, this can quickly add up to a lot of money and so really isn’t a viable solution.
Your local coffee shop is a better solution, especially if you’re confident it’s only a short term issue. The cost of a couple of lattes really isn’t much considering you’re still working. You can’t make those really important phone calls because of the sounds wafting over from the yummy mummies and the students.
Going home is one of the better solutions, particularly if its early in the day and you don’t know how long your office connection will be down. The commute home will be quicker than normal and the kids will still be at school. It’s quiet and the coffee is free. Hopefully your VoIP solution means you have a softphone app on your phone and so any calls can be made and received in much the same way as if you were at your desk.
Tethering is an option but with the average email using 75Kb of data, you can quickly burn through your xGB of monthly allowance, but it can be a solution for a short term loss of connectivity. Just be careful and keep an eye on your data usage. As previously mentioned, excess data is expensive and so your bill can quickly add up.
Here’s just a few of the images on Twitter under the hashtag #BTdown – thought you might like them.
Finally, a redundant failover solution. Of course, this is the best solution, but it does mean investing in something you hope you’ll never use. It’s connectivity insurance. There are multiple ways of doing this:
- Another internet connection, through another physical pipe in the ground and ideally away from the other one so the gasman doesn’t put his spade through it.
- A wireless solution such as Urban Wimax’s wireless solution. A line of sight solution where a box sits on your roof and connects to one of their aerials around the city
- 4G connections. Unlimited data via a 4G device that simply connects to the network. Assuming you can get a 4G signal in your office, we can connect it to your router as an automatic failover device.
So if you want to see how mad the world is about BT’s latest failure, have a look on Twitter here.
If you want to see how widespread the damage is, click here.
If you want to discuss your redundancy solutions, click here.