Not every disaster that wreaks havoc on a business has to be a major natural event like a fire, blizzard, flood or tornado. Even something as simple as accidental deletion or one wrong click on a phishing email could instigate a disastrous domino effect in your organization.
And it’s not just your company’s revenue that is impacted by downtime. There are other ways that unplanned IT downtime can impact your business, including:
- Data loss
- Lost productivity
- A damaged reputation
- Actual costs of recovery
Let’s talk about the ramifications of each and how a proactive approach will help your business.
System downtime, for instance server failures, carries the risk of data loss or corruption.
Depending on the nature of your business, this can have a huge impact on your day-to-day operations.
For instance, what if you run a medical practice and have weeks of appointments booked with patients—then one day, your server goes down, and you can’t access those records? How do you intend to serve your patients if you can’t log in to your database and see those appointments?
Today, so much of what you do involves online communication and service. Anything from email to chat to client databases and cloud-based applications requires a network connection. Without it, the gears of business grind to a halt.
And in most cases, companies still have to pay employees even if no work is being done, which puts an even greater strain on your company’s bottom line.
When your company goes offline, you’re unable to service customers or seek out new business. If your current customers don’t receive their intended products or services, it’s possible that you could lose part of your customer base.
And if customers can’t rely on you, your reputation suffers due to broken trust.
Reputational damage is a long-term consequence of downtime, and it’s difficult to restore trust if customers not only have a poor experience, but also share that experience with their peers.
The total cost of recovery depends on the actual cause of downtime, but you should never underestimate it. Sometimes, it only takes a few moments to get your business back online. Other times, it can take weeks.
And if your hardware fails completely, you’ll have new equipment costs to consider, too.
Curious to see the estimated cost of downtime for a particular scenario? Check out Datto’s downtime calculator!
How can a proactive approach to IT help keep your business online?
No business wants to experience the chaotic domino effect described above. Having your business knocked offline for even just a few minutes can heavily impact your bottom line—and more.
Fortunately, by having some appropriate proactive IT strategies in place, you can avoid stumbling through extended periods of unplanned downtime.
- Software updates: Patches and updates keep machines running efficiently and securely. Always ensure that the appropriate updates are being applied to specific devices.
- Employee cyber security awareness training: Make sure that your staff know how to respond to occurrences that may arise, such as suspicious emails or questionable alerts. Also, require ongoing, comprehensive testing and training.
- System monitoring: Keep an eye on your systems and databases. Routine maintenance is required to keep them online and running smoothly.
- Data backups: If worse comes to worst, having data backups can help you get up and running again in no time at all.
- Business continuity and disaster recovery planning: If a disaster were to occur, does your business know how to bounce back from it? You need a plan in place to continue your business operations.
- Managed IT: Managing, monitoring, and maintaining your business’s IT takes a lot of time and resources, but it can all be accomplished by partnering with the right managed IT service provider. They will assess your current IT infrastructure and help you secure it—as well as guide you through future investments and planning to help you meet your future goals.
Do you have questions about a proactive approach to IT, business continuity planning, or managed IT services?
Our comprehensive array of IT services can get you out of a reactive break-fix loop, and our planning services can help you formulate strategies to bounce back, should any incidents occur.
And, we’ll help you keep it all secure from cyber threats. Contact us today for your free consultation and learn how a proactive approach to IT can help your business.
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