words Al Woods
Whether you are working from home or running a multi-million-pound business, the cost of IT downtime can be devastating. For small businesses in the UK, the average cost of IT downtime is now £77,000 per hour. That is a hefty chunk of change. When your IT systems are down, customers cannot interact with your digital web presence.
Meanwhile, you and your employees cannot access essential files or data. On top of this, the reputational aftershocks of IT downtime can be devastating and cost you years worth of lost business. For all of these reasons, companies are working harder than ever to eliminate IT downtime altogether. But is this lofty goal even possible? Let’s take a closer look and find out.
Always Plan for IT Downtime
While business planners like to depict IT downtime as the result of poor management or bad practices, this is not always the case. True, most IT downtime is the result of human error. However, it is simply not possible to achieve a completely infallible workforce, nor is attempting to do so a worthwhile cause.
In addition, another major cause of IT downtime globally is natural disasters, something that affects businesses everywhere in our interconnected world. Put simply, your company will experience downtime. What matters is having a comprehensive and actionable plan in place to prevent the main causes of downtime, as well as having a plan for recovery.
The Majority of Downtime is Avoidable
While a certain degree of downtime is impossible to avoid, it is possible to minimize the risk to your company. The vast, vast majority of IT downtime is completely avoidable. What’s more, the know-how and tools to avoid it are simple, straightforward, and widely accessible. Here is how you can easily avoid the main causes of IT downtime.
Around 50% of all IT downtime is caused by a network outage. This figure is even higher among smaller, low-traffic websites. Network outages can be caused by a huge range of factors, most of which are avoidable if detected early. For this, you can install affordable and trustworthy software for network monitoring, which will alert you to any potential issues in your network as and when they arise. This proactive approach will keep your IT system running.
Another major cause of IT downtime is server failure. If you have your own in-house server system, there are several things you can do to greatly reduce the odds of a crash. Clean your server space often to prevent dust and debris from building up. Make sure your cooling system is operational and prevent overheating at all costs. Keep power levels consistent to avoid an overload.
Finally, there is the unavoidable factor of human error. Although nobody is perfect, you’d be amazed at how much human error can be avoided simply by instilling best practices within your team. Make sure everyone has been educated on the causes of IT downtime and is aware of the role that they can individually play in preventing any major errors from occurring. Knowledge is power.
IT downtime is not avoidable, but you definitely have control over how much it will cost you. Keep these tips in mind if you want to avoid getting wiped out by your next IT crash.