How do IT failures and downtimes affect your business?

How do IT failures and downtimes affect your business?

The digital age has ushered in numerous advancements that have radically transformed the way we live and work. Access to diverse information and resources is as simple as ever, and almost everything we do is dependent on IT — whether we’re shopping online, paying bills on our mobile phones, or sharing interesting articles with friends on WhatsApp.

We rely on IT even more in the workplace, as nearly every industry employs modern tech to simplify and streamline processes and procedures.

With such heavy dependence on IT tools and systems, any kind of interruption or failure such as an outage can lead to serious consequences. Subsequent downtime can cause loss of productivity, clients, and revenue, all of which could eventually spell the end of a business.

Loss of productivity

When your system, server, or network is shut off or unavailable, your employees won’t be able to access the platforms and resources they need to do their tasks. While a backup and recovery strategy can mitigate the risks of IT downtime, there are certain functions that can’t be carried out offline. As such, it’s imperative that IT issues are addressed as swiftly as possible to avoid significant dips in productivity.

During downtime, some employees may feel stressed because they aren't getting any work done. Meanwhile, others may find it hard to refocus after a disruption. By not properly handling IT failures, you're risking lowering your employees' morale, which can cause even greater harm to your business.

Loss of clients

During IT downtime, your employees may not be able to assist clients. Especially if you do substantial business online, any interruption to your customer-facing systems can severely impact client experiences. If customers find it difficult to or can't use your services, you run the risk of losing business.

In today's fast-paced and highly connected world, clients value real-time, omnichannel experiences. That's why the mobile web is very popular — many people prefer the ease of searching, browsing, and shopping on their phones.

But it’s not enough that you offer your products or services through a mobile platform. With the way technology has advanced in recent years, customers now expect and demand speedier capabilities. According to a 2018 research by Google, the probability of a mobile user leaving a site increases 90% if the page takes 5 seconds to load.

Given these stakes, even slow service can put your business on shaky ground. Imagine what would happen if your clients experience a complete loss of service.

Loss of revenue

In August 2016, a five-hour computer outage at a Delta Airlines operation center resulted in 2,000 canceled flights and an estimated loss of $150 million for the airline. Meanwhile, in March 2019, a 14-hour blackout cost Facebook around $90 million in lost revenue.

Without access to critical IT systems, employees can’t work properly and customers don’t receive positive experiences. If this causes significant revenue loss for large organizations, imagine how catastrophic it could be for small businesses.

A 2014 study by research and advisory company Gartner found that the average cost of downtime is $5,600 per minute. Since then, that figure has continued to rise — a 2019 IBM study determined that unplanned downtime costs 35% more per minute than planned downtime, costing $9,000.

This shows that downtime isn’t just downtime — it can be the financial grim reaper. Figuratively and literally, it pays to be prepared, as even the shortest server overloads or network glitches could put a nail in the coffin.

How should you address IT failures?

Although IT failures can be frustrating just as they are devastating, you can mitigate their impacts by effectively communicating the reason for such interruptions or breakdowns to affected parties.

There’s nothing more frustrating than being left in the dark in difficult times. Manage the expectations of your employees, customers, and service providers to keep your business afloat during downtime. Be transparent and keep communication lines open while you address IT failures.

Another thing you can do to minimize downtime is to partner with an expert managed IT services provider like Prosum. We have technicians who are specially trained to prevent IT failures from happening. Proactively addressing downtime before it even occurs makes all the difference in maintaining revenue as well as employee and customer satisfaction.

At Prosum, we’ll help you schedule regular backups, easily access data in the event of a disaster, minimize downtime in case of system failure, prevent disasters with proactive monitoring, and meet compliance regulations with ease. Call us today to learn how we can help you overcome IT failures and maintain business continuity.

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Our free eBook: 20 Signs That Your Business is Ready for Managed Services, contains at least one observation that describes the problems pestering your business’s IT.

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