Unscheduled downtime costs Canadian businesses millions of dollars every year in lost revenue, costly repairs, and even court cases. This shouldn’t come as a surprise given that we now live in a world where consumers and business customers alike seek instant gratification. If, for example, your website goes offline when a new customer wants to make a purchase, there’s a good chance they’ll look elsewhere.
In other situations, unexpected downtime is a direct result of a security breach, which often accompanies reduced customer confidence and hefty legal fees for failing to comply with regulations. The possibilities are plentiful, but consequences can be dire. That’s why you need to get a handle on IT downtime by partnering with a technology provider you can depend on.
Here are five things your IT provider should be doing to help eliminate downtime:
#1. Round-the-Clock Monitoring
Round-the-clock monitoring is among the most basic services that managed service providers offer, and it turns traditional IT support on its head. Instead of waiting for you to notice that there’s a problem with your mission-critical system, proactive monitoring keeps you informed around the clock. It also lets your IT provider know about any problems in real-time so they can address them quickly, often before you’ve even had a chance to realize that anything was amiss in the first place!
#2. Disaster Recovery Planning
Although human error is often to blame for problems that lead to unexpected IT downtime, there will always be a chance of things going wrong. Whether it’s an upgrade or migration that didn’t work out, a severe data breach, or just plain old employee negligence, you always need to have a Plan B.
Disaster recovery planning is a pillar of any good IT strategy, which is why it’s an important service your technology partner should provide. With redundant systems in place to use as a backup if the primary system fails, your service provider should be able to keep any disruptions to a minimum.
#3. Network Assessments
One of the big red flags to look out for when partnering with a technology provider is a company that’s trying to sell you a product that promises to be the answer to all IT-related challenges. Instead, a dependable IT provider should be someone that your company will have an ongoing relationship with. After all, business technology is a constantly evolving sector where new challenges appear all the time.
All technology providers should offer network audits and in-person consultations to regularly check up on your network’s health and ensure you’re getting the service you’re paying for. That’s what makes speedy customer service one of the most critical factors when getting downtime under control.
#4. Regular Updates
Patch management is crucial when it comes to both security and performance. Every responsible software developer provides regular updates to patch vulnerabilities, improve compatibility with new technologies, and add features as requested by users.
Fortunately, if you’re using cloud-hosted software, your service provider should ensure that everything is kept current to keep performance to a maximum and downtime to a minimum. However, they should also allow you to defer major feature updates that might cause disruption without proper preparation. Moreover, security-related updates should be installed the moment they become available.
#5. Proactive Security
Cyberattacks are among the most common causes of unexpected downtime. One of the most pervasive threats are distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, which causes major disruption by overloading a server with requests until it slows to a crawl or stops working entirely.
Another common problem is malware or a data breach in progress that hogs all your bandwidth. In other situations, a severe data breach might lead to all your systems being taken offline until you learn where the vulnerability lies, and you have a chance to fix it. These are just a few scenarios that highlight the need for proactive security measures to stop threats dead in their tracks before they make it past your network with disastrous consequences.
Dyrand takes care of your IT so you don’t have to. We offer businesses in the US and Canada the tools they need to eliminate downtime and maximize productivity every day of the year. Call us today to talk to one of our experts.