September 1, 2010 Bandwidth, Network Connections, Phone Systems, SIP Network outages, viruses, power failures and other barriers to effective business communication happen. Not only do they impact your productivity and profit, but they are so sporadic and spontaneous that you can’t predict and prevent them all. But what you can do is prepare. Three critical points of contact that are important to prepare and protect include your business phone system, internet connectivity and bandwidth capacity. Without these, current and potential customers, partners and other outside contacts can’t reach you and, even worse, you have no control over how they react. Given that these touch points are so important to how your business communicates, here are a few ways to ensure that you’re never left without them: Phone Systems Though many tend to rely on email nowadays, telephone use is far from dead. It’s still considered one of the lifelines of business, that’s why we all use it. One of the ways to keep this lifeline running when an outage occurs is to utilize a data center/co-location facility, a fortress of sorts that has various internet connections and back-up power sources. There are two ways you can utilize such a facility: either by putting your hardware solely at the facility, or at both the facility and your location, which is known as co-location. By putting at least part of your phone system’s physical hardware at an off-site location, you’re using that center’s redundancy to ensure your mission-critical functions in the event that your office experiences a power outage, network failure, or other disaster. And the best part is that the data center/co-location facility is so well prepared to handle barriers to business that it would take more than the perfect storm to impact your system. To provide this data center/co-location option to our customers, ETA offers the Mitel Communications Director (MCD). The MCD is a highly scalable IP-PBX software that provides powerful telephony features and seamless networking across locations, along with the flexibility to function in both hosted and distributed environments. Not only can you use a data center or co-location with the MCD, but you can also support a mobile workforce. So, in the event that you choose not to use a data center/co-location facility and a power outage occurs at your office, you can just move to your remote location. It’s that simple. Click here to contact us to learn more. Internet Connectivity Businesses of all sizes and in all industries depend on the Internet and can’t afford to be cut off from it for any significant amount of time. Not only are remote workers and email dependent on Internet, but, now, with voice being delivered over the Internet (VoIP), ensuring continuous uptime is more critical than ever. To prevent you from ever losing connectivity, ETA has developed Internet Uptime PoweredUp!™, which keeps your Internet connection up and running by transparently combining multiple Internet links (T1, DSL, Cable, 3G Wireless, etc.) to aggregate bandwidth, load balance and provide automatic failover across all connections for both outbound and inbound traffic. In truth, Internet Uptime PoweredUp!™ works so well, you may not even know that your network experienced interference. For instance, when our Director of IT emailed KPI Interface, an ETA customer, to let them know their office had experienced some Comcast outages, they replied, “Thanks for the information, that is really remarkable as we didn’t miss a beat over here. I would not have known had you not told me! You product is really something.” To learn more, click here to contact us. Bandwidth Capacity Just as having Internet connectivity is important, so is the amount of data you can transfer over it. If you are connected to the Internet, but can’t send an email bigger than 2MB or can’t research your proposal because it takes an hour to upload a page, how does that help you? In this day and age, we businesses need to share vast amounts of information quickly, making bandwidth capacity just as important as Internet connectivity. One way to ensure your bandwidth capacity is with SIP Trunking, a new communications technology solution allows businesses with an installed PBX to use real-time communications, including VoIP. The benefit of SIP Trunking is not just that you can replace traditional PSTN lines with an IP phone system or that you enjoy significant cost savings because of dynamically scalability and compatibility with existing telephone systems. The benefit also lies in the fact that SIP Trunking drastically simplifies your network with a single connection for voice and data, causing you to only have to back up one, rather than two, systems. It’s simple, but incredibility effective. Of course these aren’t the only ways we ensure your business continuity, but they’re important to consider when designing a complete solution. At ETA, that’s exactly what we do. We work with you to thoroughly understand your technology needs and business objectives to design a customized solution. Just contact us today to see how these solutions can help improve your business.