how can a business minimise network outages

How Can a Business Minimise Network Outages?

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    Network reliability is the hidden hero of your company's success in today's hyper-connected digital economy, where business operations rely more than ever on the uninterrupted flow of data and information.

    The success or failure of every business, whether it's a fledgling startup, a growing company, or a multinational behemoth, depends critically on the reliability of its network infrastructure.

    Just picture this: A critical deadline looming over your team's heads, and the network crashed. As productivity plummets, customer interactions dry up, and income opportunities evaporate, panic sets in. Businesses of all sizes are vulnerable to the devastating effects of network instability, including lost revenue, damaged customer confidence, and even the company's demise.

    In this blog article, we'll go into great detail about why network stability is vital for businesses of all sizes and sectors. We'll look into the most typical reasons for network downtime, their wide-ranging effects, and the steps you can take to safeguard your company's progress against further interruptions.

    Hold on to your seats because we're about to go on an adventure to learn why a reliable network is crucial to your company's success. Whether you're an experienced business owner with a profound grasp of technology or just getting your feet wet in the field of network administration, this article will help you see why it's crucial to prioritise network reliability. Okay, so let's begin!

    What Constitutes a Network Outage?

    When a company's network is down, users cannot connect because a critical system or application has failed. Possible causes of downtime include routine maintenance, power outages, and hardware malfunctions. Depending on factors like company size, client base, and service skills, the effects of a service outage seem highly different from one company to the next.

    Network outages occur when there is no problem with your server itself but rather with the connection between your device and the server. Most service providers can do little to prevent such disruptions, which are usually brought on by issues with network routing. In such a scenario, website monitoring services would falsely indicate that your website is down even though the servers are online.

    A website might lose visitors, prospective business, and its whole online reputation in only a few short seconds. Knowing as much as possible about how to avoid such problems is, thus, a prudent course of action.

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    What Causes Network Issues and Why It's Unavoidable for Businesses

    Companies of all sizes risk incurring significant losses due to unanticipated network outages. There might be hundreds of dollars in lost income for every minute of delay. If your network is up and running 99% of the time in a given year, you will still have around 3.5 days of downtime, which can cost you millions of dollars. 

    When business operations are interrupted, it can result in several adverse outcomes, including lost revenue, productivity, unsaved work and files, angry and dissatisfied customers, a dented brand reputation, stressed-out employees, and increased pressure on the IT department to restore services as soon as possible. It may take 20 minutes or more for workers to return to work when the network has been restored.

    The following are some of the most typical causes of network outages. Your firm's management and IT staff benefit significantly from knowing this to plan for and minimise network outages.

    Outdated Technology

    Like other technologies, network hardware eventually becomes obsolete. Failures and performance difficulties increase with the age of hardware. Although frequent upgrades and maintenance might postpone this, a replacement is eventually required.

    Failure Due to Human Actions

    It's human nature to err now and then. IT staff must be available around the clock, every day of the year, to maintain the network operational. Some of you are on call 24/7 and must be available at all hours to deal with unexpected situations. Unfortunately, network outages don't always happen outside of regular working hours. 

    Your IT staff may experience mental and physical exhaustion due to lack of sleep and the pressure to find and fix the problems as soon as feasible. The sheer volume of daily IT network warnings might make determining what must be done first challenging. Each notification is a diversion. Every pause in your work is an opportunity for distraction. According to research, regaining concentration and getting back to work might take up to 23 minutes.

    Outside Influences

    Internet service provider (ISP) downtime, bad weather, and malicious hacking are external variables affecting network speed. Factors outside the company's control can trigger unexpected network issues. A network's bandwidth demands rise as a company expands and adds more customers. This influx of users burdens the network and might cause slowdowns and bottlenecks.

    Faulty Hardware and Buggy Software

    No sound or bad thing ever stays the same. Hardware failure is inevitable, but you can never predict when, how, or why it will occur. The likelihood of a failure increases as computer hardware ages. 

    If the hardware isn't compatible, if you don't have the correct drivers loaded, or if you still need to update the drivers, a software update or patch can bring down the entire network. Application corruption caused by software failure might bring down the entire network. Additionally, upgrading to the newest operating system version is necessary in due time.

    Having updated plans in place, testing software patches before applying them, and extending storage capacity as needed can assist in minimising or mitigating the effect of network downtime caused by hardware and software issues. When upgrading or updating, do so at night or on weekends when employees are less likely to use the network.

    Continuous Shifts

    A business network is a living, breathing thing, regularly adapting to new hardware, software, and users. Every update might cause incompatibilities, security holes, and other issues that must be fixed.

    IT Staffing Shortage

    If your IT team is overworked, your network is more susceptible to human error and outages. You need more resources to monitor the network around the clock, handle updates, and execute other essential duties.

    You can expand your workforce if funds permit. Another option is hiring a network operations centre (NOC) for round-the-clock network monitoring.   

    Security Risks

    Spoofing, trojans, and denial of service attacks are used to probe your network's infrastructure in search of vulnerable spots where they may steal data or bring the whole thing crashing down. In addition to attacking your network, the attacks might be used to get unauthorised access to devices on the network. Intruders can take complete control of your network if they compromise even a single device.

    While issues in the network are unavoidable, they can be fixed. Most of the time, companies can maintain their networks functioning smoothly and with few disruptions by employing proactive and active network monitoring, regular maintenance, and a competent IT team.

    You can quickly spot network problems by being aware of the issues that impact your system most.

    Potential Losses Caused by Network Outages

    Income Reduction

    When a company's customer-facing apps and systems are slowed down due to an outage, the business will lose a lot of money. For instance, a server failure or website meltdown might cost an online retailer thousands of dollars every hour.

    Productivity Drops

    In a network outage, workers may be unable to do routine activities. However, businesses must still pay them as agreed upon in their contracts. There will be financial and productivity losses every hour staff aren't working on the project.

    Recovery Expenses

    It can be expensive to restore a network after an interruption. Overtime wages, broken machinery repairs, and lost data are just a few examples of the expenditures businesses must bear to restart their operations.

    Intangible Expenses

    Indirect expenses associated with a network outage can severely harm a company's image. Network failures are expected outcomes of client unhappiness, falling stock prices, bad PR, and increased customer turnover.

    How to Prevent Business Network Outages

    Employ a Corporate-Grade Network Infrastructure

    If your company is enormous or expected to develop fast, your network infrastructure must be able to keep up. 

    It's common practice for startups to use private servers to power their network throughout the early stages. However, in the long run, you'll need to switch to an enterprise network, which integrates several computers and users onto a single LAN. 

    Check Regularly

    By spotting potential points of failure through monitoring, problems with the network may be fixed before they even occur.

    Monitoring in real-time also aids in keeping track of incoming cyber threats, which should be happening constantly. When your computer network crashes, hackers and data thieves might quickly gain access to your sensitive information. A breach's severity can be significantly altered by even a few minutes' delay in detection.

    Ensure You Always Have a Plan B

    Having a plan B (and C, and D, and so on) fully documented can assist in avoiding or at least lessening network outages in times of crisis, regardless of your present infrastructure. 

    For instance, in regions prone to hurricanes and other storms that may disrupt internet service, planning for environmental conditions (i.e., having a backup power connection and implementation strategy) is essential. 

    Check and Recheck

    What is measured gets managed, so the adage goes. Regular testing and retesting are essential to determine whether software and hardware components need to be updated or changed to ensure optimal network performance.

    These findings can also help a growing company decide whether to hire more IT workers or switch to a managed cloud services provider.

    Keep It Straightforward

    Network complexity is expected to rise with the proliferation of mobile devices in the workplace. However, a less complex network is less expensive to operate and maintain and provides more resilience.

    This advice is relevant to your network's hardware and software components, so it might be an intelligent topic to pose to your managed IT services provider.

    Systems Should Be Regularly Updated

    The prevalence and sophistication of cybercrime increase daily, if not hourly. Old software that is supposed to detect and stop contemporary security threats is at least partially responsible for some network problems.

    Keeping software up-to-date and (educating personnel on why this is vital) may significantly minimise the total number of exposed nodes in a network.

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    Set up a Backup System for Your Network

    Companies that must have continual access to the internet should seriously consider investing in a secondary network connection. If one service provider or connection goes down, the backup will kick in immediately. 

    This tactic is ideal for organisations in sectors most vulnerable to cybercrime, such as the financial and healthcare sectors.

    Reduce Congestion

    Information technology bottlenecks occur when data flow is slowed because of insufficient hardware, software, or network capacity. Misconfigurations in the network or defective hardware are common causes of these stealthy offenders. Investigate any sections of your network where you see slower speeds or interface issues.

    Make Communication a Top Priority

    In the event of a system failure, understanding who is accountable for what is essential. Rapid department-to-department communication can aid in identifying risks and minimising network outages. Training replacement employees can also achieve consistency in an absence due to illness or resignation.

    Allocate Sufficient Means to Your Network

    Due to increasing network volume and complexity, managed network connectivity helps simplify and secure a company's infrastructure. It's one place to spend money if you're doing business online. 

    Any cost savings from understaffing IT might be lost during a data breach or prolonged network outage.


    A network outage happens when a key system or programme stops working, making it impossible for users to connect. Network downtime can be caused by things like normal maintenance, power outages, and hardware problems. The effects of a service outage rely on how big the company is, how many clients it has, and how good its service is.

    Unexpected network outages can cause a lot of damage, such as lost revenue, productivity, work and files that weren't saved, unhappy customers, a damaged brand image, stressed-out employees, and more pressure on the IT department to get services back up and running as soon as possible.

    Some of the most common reasons for network breakdowns are old technology, human error, outside factors like ISP downtime, bad weather, and hacking, and broken hardware and software.

    Businesses should have up-to-date plans, try software patches before putting them in place, and add storage space as needed to reduce network outages caused by hardware and software problems. At some point, you'll need to upgrade to the latest version of the operating system.

    Doing this at night or on the weekend, when workers are less likely to use the network, can help lessen the impact of these problems. By putting network reliability first, companies can make sure they keep doing well and avoid problems that could go wrong.

    A business network is always changing, so it needs to be updated and protected all the time to avoid problems with compatibility and security. Overworked IT workers can make mistakes and cause outages, which means they need more help to watch and handle updates. Spoofing, trojans, and denial of service threats are all security risks that can steal data or cause a system to crash.

    Companies should use a corporate-grade network infrastructure, check for possible problems on a regular basis, and make sure they have a backup plan in case of an emergency. Testing and re-testing software and hardware parts on a regular basis can help find out if they need to be updated or changed.

    The number of mobile devices is projected to make networks more complicated, but a less complicated network costs less to run and maintain and is more reliable. Keeping software up-to-date and teaching people how important it is to do so can help reduce the number of open nodes in a network.

    Organisations in the financial and healthcare sectors, which are most likely to be victims of cybercrime, need to invest in a second network link. To avoid IT bottlenecks caused by not enough hardware, software, or network bandwidth, it's important to reduce congestion.

    In case of system breakdowns, communication is the most important thing because it helps to find risks and keep outages to a minimum. Training new workers can also help keep things the same when people are out sick or have quit.

    Give your network enough resources because managed network connection makes a company's infrastructure easier to use and safer. But if there aren't enough IT workers, data could be lost during a data breach or a long network failure.

    Content Summary

    • Network reliability is essential in the digital economy.
    • Every business depends on a robust network infrastructure for success.
    • Network instability can lead to severe business repercussions.
    • Network outages can cost businesses significant revenue.
    • This article stresses the importance of prioritising network reliability.
    • A network outage occurs when users can't connect due to system failure.
    • Downtime can be caused by routine maintenance, power outages, or hardware issues.
    • A network outage can have varied effects depending on company size.
    • Companies can lose prospective business and reputation during an outage.
    • Unexpected network outages can result in significant financial losses.
    • Even 99% uptime leaves around 3.5 days of potential downtime annually.
    • Network disruptions can lead to lost productivity and customer dissatisfaction.
    • Outdated network technology can be a primary cause of outages.
    • Human errors can inadvertently lead to network interruptions.
    • External factors like ISP downtime and bad weather can affect networks.
    • Faulty hardware and incompatible software can cause outages.
    • Inadequate testing can result in software-related network disruptions.
    • Continuous changes and updates can create network vulnerabilities.
    • IT staffing shortages can make networks more susceptible to errors.
    • External security risks like spoofing can target network vulnerabilities.
    • Network outages can be mitigated with proactive measures.
    • Recognising potential issues can help in swift problem resolution.
    • Network outages can reduce company income significantly.
    • Productivity dips when employees cannot access necessary resources.
    • Recovering from an outage might involve additional expenses.
    • Network outages can also lead to intangible losses like a damaged reputation.
    • Investing in corporate-grade network infrastructure can prevent outages.
    • Startups might initially use private servers but should later upgrade.
    • Regular network monitoring can preempt potential failures.
    • Real-time monitoring can detect and counter cyber threats instantly.
    • Companies should have backup plans in case of network disruptions.
    • Environments prone to natural disasters need additional precautions.
    • Regular testing can identify the need for software and hardware updates.
    • Simplicity in network design can lead to more robust systems.
    • As mobile device usage grows, network complexity also increases.
    • Regular software updates can defend against evolving cyber threats.
    • Educating employees on cyber threats is crucial.
    • Companies can consider hybrid cloud solutions for network robustness.
    • Such solutions can help in managing traffic and ensuring uptime.
    • Cloud solutions provide flexibility and scalability for growing businesses.
    • A cloud network solution can also provide disaster recovery options.
    • Outsourcing network management can offer expert assistance.
    • Managed IT services can provide round-the-clock monitoring.
    • Partnering with IT experts can bring in industry best practices.
    • Backing up essential data is a key step in preventing losses.
    • Establishing communication protocols can keep stakeholders informed during outages.
    • Employee training can ensure swift action during network disruptions.
    • Network redundancies can act as fallbacks during primary system failures.
    • Investing in network security can deter potential external threats.
    • Overall, proactive network management can minimise outages and associated losses.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Network outages can occur for various reasons, including hardware failures, software glitches, human errors, security breaches, and natural disasters. Identifying and addressing these causes is essential to prevent outages.


    Yes, network outages can compromise data security. During an outage, security systems may become inactive, leaving the network vulnerable to cyberattacks. Additionally, critical data loss during an outage can have long-term consequences.


    While it may be impossible to eliminate the risk of network outages, they can be minimised through proactive measures. These include regular network monitoring, system maintenance, disaster recovery planning, and employee training.


    Managed IT services providers can play a crucial role in network stability. They offer proactive network monitoring, maintenance, and cybersecurity measures to prevent outages and quickly respond when issues arise.


    Long-term benefits include increased operational efficiency, enhanced customer satisfaction, reduced cybersecurity risks, and improved business continuity. Ultimately, network stability contributes to a business's overall success and growth.

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