Cloud solutions can be a real boon for any business when disaster strikes. It's important for organisations to consider how business continuity would be impacted in a worst-case scenario, for example in extreme cases where business premises cannot be accessed or where available customer or client records cannot be retrieved. IP telephony offers the continuity solutions that enable any business to operate as normal.
Disasters come in a range of guises: whether it's a power cut, heavy snow or fallen trees which cut power lines or access to business premises. Planning your disaster recovery solutions can be a complex task, but this type of risk management is vital for every organisation, in any UK location.
We discuss some of the issues surrounding business continuity and disaster recovery planning below:
Natural or man-made disasters can impact your business at any time
It's said that over 40% of UK business organisations which close down following a disaster will never actually re-open and it's important to recognise that disasters like fire, flood or building collapse can happen at any time. In addition, a further 29% of these businesses will permanently close within two years of the disaster occurring.
As the above examples illustrate, planning for disaster recovery can make a real difference to the survival of your business. Flexible telephony solutions with cloud hosting and hosted backups can be one way to ensure continued communications in the event of any kind of disaster. Modern technology makes it far easier for any worker to be based remotely and access all the data they need from mobile devices and laptops. In many ways, cloud-hosted solutions can make light work of any kind of disaster situation. However, it's important that adequate planning is in place to ensure all workers are aware of where they should go and how their daily operations can be maintained in situations when traditional office working is impossible.
Ways cloud telephony helps your business prepare for your disaster and recovery in worst case scenarios
Cloud telephone systems feature off-site data storage and hosting. This means the critical data for your organisation is hosted by servers in a totally different physical location. Even if your offices are unavailable, your workforce can still access this information from alternative locations. This type of unified communication allows your normal daily operations to continue, including phone calls, conference calls, online text and fax messaging and chat.
Business continuity and disaster avoidance planning
Business continuity is the principal issue to bear in mind when thinking about disaster recovery and using cloud telephony services makes it easy to plan for disaster avoidance. With cloud solutions, your planning can incorporate all the activities and actions workers need to take in the event of a disaster and inability to access offices. Whether you opt for key team members to work from home or remotely from one of your alternative business locations will be up to you, but your cloud telephone system will be integral to ongoing operations.
What would a business continuity plan include?
Your business continuity planning should form part of organisational risk management and be conducted well in advance of any potential disaster. It's important that all team members understand what would be expected of them in the event of emergencies and that critical contact is maintained for customers, clients, suppliers and other official bodies.
The recoverability of all data and continued service are essential for any business, and one key benefit of cloud telephony is that incoming callers can be routed to individual numbers. This makes it easy for all departments and teams to work effectively from any location. So, you won't have to worry about finding a replacement office that's big enough to house your entire workforce.
Contemporary organisations need the ability to deliver a speedy and efficient service at all times, and this includes times when disasters make normal business operations impossible. Indeed, maintaining cash flow and levels of service and income generation are even more critical in emergency situations, as you may need to provide a substantial proportion of the funding needed to return business operations to normal.
Planning for disaster recovery in your organisation
No matter what size business you run, planning for disaster is an important management task that should not be neglected. After all, when you plan for worst case scenarios, most other misfortunes seem like chicken feed. The first step in planning for major disaster recovery is calling key team members together for a day of planning and brainstorming. Every option within worst-case scenarios will need to be discussed and short-term recovery plans put in place.
All departments, teams and individual workers need to be made aware of what their role will involve in the event of a major disaster and the locations in which they will work.
With cloud-based solutions in place, your workforce will have the ability to access data from mobile devices, laptops or home-based computers. This can make planning your operational recovery easier. What's more, sophisticated voice mail and messaging systems will mean no incoming calls will be lost. Of course, it will be difficult for teams to work from a variety of locations over this period, but hopefully, your offices will not be inaccessible for a long period of time.
Disaster planning of this nature will help your business recover from emergencies much better and will hopefully mitigate the financial losses suffered. Cloud telephony solutions can be one essential business solution that business owners take on board, both for disaster planning and for the increased productivity and efficiency levels that can be achieved during normal business operations.
Have a chat with one of our solutions experts to discuss the wide variety of business-critical solutions we can supply and ensure the protection of your vital business data with secure cloud hosting and backup. Our knowledgeable customer service team members can also offer support with your business disaster recovery planning to ensure none of the essential aspects of your organisation fail in the event of an emergency.