Yes, I'm sorry, winter is near... Or, yes, I'm so excited, winter is here!
Regardless of your view, the winter season's weather brings its own unique challenges. Freezing weather along with ice storms and snow storms can cause a variety of problems including power outages, snow days, and more.
Winterize your computers and your office with these handy tips!
1. Snow Day Policy and Planning
What's your organization's policy when there's a snow day? What're your expectations for employees getting to the office? Or can they work from home?
Could they even work from home? Do they have the proper remote access to your computer systems and phones? Do you have a way to communicate with everyone? Will you need to forward your main phone number to a cell phone?
2. Prepare for Power Outages
Ensure your battery backup systems or uninterruptible power systems are working well and as intended. Are the batteries in good shape? Will they keep your systems running? Are systems set to properly shutdown after an extended power outage? Are key devices like your phone system, security system, firewall, network switches and all servers protected? Are all devices properly grounded and protected from surges?
3. Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity
Are you prepared for a disaster like frozen pipes or a collapsed roof? Make sure your critical business systems and servers are properly protected with the right backup and disaster recovery solution that meets your expectations for recovery. Do you have more than one Internet service provider in case one goes down?
Now is a great time to review your insurance policies with your agent to ensure you're covered for the various perils that come with winter.
5. Remote Access
How will you work when there's a snow day? Or maybe you're traveling somewhere warm or to the mountains for some serious downhill skiing. You may need to get some work done. Are your computers and applications all setup for secure remote access? Can you access your phones remotely?
6. Moving Systems to the Cloud
Have you been pondering whether to move some or all of your systems to the cloud? One big benefit of the cloud is that smooth operation and high availability is unbound from your own facilities and local weather.
7. New Computers
While it's always nice to update slow or unreliable computers, now is a great time to do your end of year tax planning. Is your accountant suggesting you buy some new equipment? Perhaps some new computers are just the right holiday gift to yourself and your team!
Most disasters, downtime, and business interruptions can be significantly reduced or completely avoided with proper planning and preparation. Review these tips and suggestions and take action today!