In 2013 it was heavy snow, and in 2015 severe flooding – natural disasters that had a major impact on individuals and businesses across the country. These events forced businesses to temporarily close, with the 2013 snow costing SMEs as much as £52,770 each.
For many businesses, these costs are simply unsustainable. Obviously, bad weather in the winter is predictable, with 89% of managers recognising business continuity as a key responsibility – yet only 63% have put suitable measures in place.
Why aren’t businesses doing more to ensure that employees can continue working when they cannot get into the office? Embracing Cloud computing will ensure business continuity and productivity is not affected by winter outages.
The power of the Cloud
Cloud solutions such as Microsoft Office 365 provide access to your work applications any time, any place, and via any device. This means that localised disasters or outages, which prevent employees making it into the office, will not affect workflow. Staff can work remotely for as long as required, using the collaborative features of Office 365 – including Skype for Business – to stay in touch with colleagues.
There’s a good chance that your business uses bespoke software for some of your operations, but again the Cloud can assist. By migrating applications to the Microsoft Azure Cloud platform, they too can be accessed remotely.
Avoiding permanent data loss
Migrating corporate systems to the Cloud is about more than simply making key systems accessible in times of disaster. A localised flood may destroy your company server, rendering all the data stored on it inaccessible – potentially permanently.
This is not an issue when using Cloud services because data is held offsite, often spread across several datacenters to protect against loss. This level of protection means that your office and one of the Cloud datacenters could be destroyed, but your data would be protected and still available.
Preparing before a disaster
Of course, these benefits are only available if you migrate before disaster strikes. Not only do you need to carry out the necessary migrations, but staff will also require proper training on how to connect to your Cloud systems.
Fortunately the process is nowhere near as daunting as it sounds – particularly when you have a knowledgeable Cloud IT partner to assist. To learn more about using the Cloud to protect your business against winter outages, please get in touch – our team of expert consultants is ready to help you today.