We’re not talking about being ready with your wellies and your sledge here. Rather, Is your business ready for any potential issues the forecasted bad weather could bring? Do you have an effective disaster recovery plan in place in case your comms go down or your staff can’t get into work? Are your customers ready? Or are you going to receive a high volume of calls from potentially disgruntled customers?
You might think “well it’s a bit late talking about this now, the snow is due later this week” but we did warn you back in the summer with our “Help your customers to keep calm & carry on” article that describes the ways in which modern technologies can help you and your customers implement effective disaster recovery solutions, take advantage of increased flexibility and resilience and reap the financial rewards.
However, if you didn’t take our advice and adopt this approach for both your own business and your customers, here are our tips to get you through any potential issues that may occur:
#1. Stay informed
Knowledge is power and it’s important to stay well informed, especially where disgruntled customers are concerned. With that in mind make sure you know what’s going on with your providers’ (and their carriers’) networks – are there any issues? Are there any MBORC (Matters Beyond Our Reasonable Control) alerts in place? What are the likely fix times for known issues? Which areas are most likely to be affected etc?
Most providers deliver this information to their customers via one format or another. Entanet’s customers can subscribe to our NOC and Partner Update emails, our NOC Twitter feed (https://twitter.com/entanetnoc) and view all information via our alerts on synergi.
#2. Be quick to communicate
Where possible, make sure your website/call systems etc advise of increased call waits, extended fix times et al as and when they occur and send emails to any affected customers advising of known issues and providing any updates available at the time. You wouldn’t want to be kept in the dark and neither do they.
#3. Work flexibly if you can
Do you have the systems and processes in place to allow your staff to work from home if they need to? Can you switch calls to mobiles and home numbers if you need to? If the answer is yes, this may be the best approach if the weather really does hit as bad as it has elsewhere on the continent, to ensure your business remains operational. If the answer is no, your first job after the snow has cleared should be to rectify this for any future incidents.
#4. Don’t panic
It won’t last forever (it is the British weather after all) and order will be restored before you know it, hopefully with lessons learnt along the way. Ride out the storm and then work hard afterwards to put right anything damaged. If your customer relationships are affected use this as a learning experience to persuade customers of the importance of DR and business continuity.
#5. Implement a DR plan
We may have already mentioned this a couple of times already but just to drive it home…prevention is better than cure! Avoid the panic next time by making sure your business is resilient and has an effective DR plan in place. Re-read our article “Help your customers to keep calm & carry on” and start talking to your customers about implementing their own DR plans! In the words of the Scouts…be prepared!
Have your say!
Are you prepared should the worst happen? Can your business continue almost unaffected by a bad weather spell? Are your customers prepared or are you expecting to be hit hard? Have you tried selling DR/business continuity plans? Let us know your thoughts about DR and share your experiences with a comment below.
- Entanet Opinion: Help your customers to keep calm & carry on
- Entanet Opinion: 5 Reasons why you should move from traditional PBX to VoIP
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