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If Your Network is in the Cloud, What Do You Do with No Internet?

Thanks to the advancements of virtualization and cloud computing, many businesses are hosting key parts of their IT infrastructure off-site. While this move is great for mobility and productivity, it makes operations extremely dependent upon b2ap3_large_what_happens_now_400a working Internet connection. If this scenario describes your organization, what’s your plan to stay productive should your Internet connection fail?

Whether you host just some of your mission-critical data in the cloud or your entire IT infrastructure, a failed Internet connection translates to costly downtime; even those annoying Internet “hiccups” can add up over the course of the workday. Even the best ISPs can’t promise 100 percent uptime, making it very likely that you’ve experienced this pain point before.

Also, what about a worst-case scenario? Imagine for a moment Washington D.C. getting slammed with a natural disaster that takes your ISP offline for days. This is more likely to happen than you would think. Here are three solutions to overcome this inconvenience.

Have a Backup IT Infrastructure On-Site
One solution is to have a backup of your infrastructure stored locally on your in-house network. Taking a precaution like this certainly is prudent, although, while locally backing up your infrastructure is a great move, not every business will have the ability or funds needed to enact this proactive measure.

Access a Mobile Network
Another idea to give your office Internet access when your ISP fails is to equip your staff with 4G-enabled laptops and smartphones that can act as temporary hotspots. This will provide your team with the ability to access the files they need over the 4G network, allowing operations to continue humming along. However, before you put a lot of stock into a strategy like this, you’ll first want to check the terms and conditions of your mobile data plan. Having the entire office access your carrier’s 4G network could result in some hefty fees that may or may not be offset by the profits made while working on your mobile network.

Have Your Team Work Remotely
Another approach is to simply take advantage of other working Internet connections that can be found elsewhere. This is one clear advantage to having a mobile workforce. If your office is experiencing Internet troubles, then your staff can take their mobile devices with them to the nearest coffee shop with working Wi-Fi connection, or even work from their homes. A move like this will keep operations going in an emergency situation, and depending on the likes and dislikes of your staff, you may even find such an arrangement to be more productive for your company overall.

According to ZDNet, this option may actually be the best option in terms of overcoming downtime, and it’s worth implementing as a contingency plan: “It’s true that businesses are increasingly allowing for remote work and disaster planning is a good argument for it. It may even be worthwhile as an exercise. Require employees to have a plan for working off-site and schedule a day for everyone, or perhaps one department at a time, to do so. You might learn something about productivity while you’re at it. 9/11 proved that it’s possible your offices may be out of commission for a while. Do you really want to have to make up your plans on the spot when that happens?”

Having a plan in place to account for the loss of Internet is just one of the many potential IT problems that you’ll want to be prepared for. Whether your IT infrastructure is hosted in the cloud or it’s located in-house, there exist a plethora of downtime-causing events that can strike your business at anytime (like hacking attacks, user error, and more). Working with RJ PRO to create a bulletproof business continuity plan is the surest way to keep your company up and running, no matter what problems you’re faced with.