Downtime is an issue faced by businesses of every size all over the world. Being an unexpected event that halts business productivity, even for a short while, this is a major problem that can cause you to lose large amounts of time and money. It could also result in dissatisfaction among your customers, which can lead to damage to your brand and reputation, as well as any number of legal issues. All of these potential problems can also harm the morale and productivity of your staff. Thankfully, you can prevent these worries. Here are ten ways you may be able to do this.
- Track Your Downtime Carefully
Knowing how, when, and where downtime occurs is crucial in understanding how to prevent it. With that in mind, one of the earliest steps in reducing your downtime should be accurately and carefully tracking occurrences of it within your business. These days, there are automatic detectors that can do this for you, alerting you quickly when there is an issue. Once you know of a few common problems, you can better identify and plan to reduce and eliminate many others.
- Properly Train Your Employees
As most business owners already know, without dedicated and productive employees, your business wouldn’t be able to survive. For this reason, it should be no surprise that your employees have the potential to be one of the biggest causes of downtime in your company. After all, if your employees are making mistakes, it is going to cause problems. Because of this, you should ensure that all of your staff are trained and understand how to use office equipment.
- Get Professional IT Help
Good equipment operators should be able to diagnose and fix a number of issues to their own machine, whether this is a simple computer desktop or something much larger. That being said, there are some problems that are too complicated or dangerous for certain employees to handle themselves. Rather than costing yourself, even more, time and money, you should bring in some extra help. This could be an in-house IT department or a trusted support service you can call in.
- Upgrade Any Outdated Equipment
There are a lot of issues out there that a trusted and experienced professional can put right for you. Unfortunately, however, they won’t be able to fix everything. When a piece of equipment starts to get quite old, it will face serious damage, even if you’ve taken proper care of it and stuck to a maintenance schedule. What’s more, the parts required to fix these devices will become harder to find and more expensive. It’s better to upgrade your tech than hold on to the old.
- Stick To Maintenance Schedules
All that being said, maintenance can help to expand the lifespan of your equipment, meaning that you’ll need to upgrade devices and buy new tech less often. This can save you a lot of money in the long run, and will also reduce the number of breakdowns you face, which tend to halt business processes. There are plenty of maintenance tasks equipment operators can handle themselves, but you will also need to use more skilled workers now and then, just to be safe.
- Prepare For Power Outages
Of course, having working equipment will be of little use to you if you don’t have the energy required to power it. A power outage can grind your entire company to a halt, especially when there are a number of electronic devices you need to use. For this reason, you should ensure you have the number of a professional, like a level 2 service provider. If it’s practical, you may also want to invest in a backup generator to keep the power running in your company.
- Think About Your Finances
As costly as downtime can be, resolving the problems that cause it aren’t exactly cheap either. This means you need to prepare your finances and have plans for when things go wrong in your company. For example, if you needed to call in an electrician, you may need to dip into your emergency fund, so it’s crucial that you build one for your business. You should also insure your equipment for possible damage or theft, so you don’t need to pay out for replacements yourself.
- Look To The Cloud
Cloud technology benefits companies in a number of ways. It saves time and money printing documents, reduces the space you would use storing them, and is also much more secure than your average filing cabinet. The cloud is also available to your team from a number of different devices, making collaboration simple and efficient. This can help to reduce downtime massively, as it means you’ll still have access to files, even without your regular computer or laptop.
- Use The Best Provider
Unfortunately, when you’re storing your data online, you need a reliable internet service provider to make this possible. If your connection is slow or not working a lot of the time, then it’s going to cause some major problems, including money issues and frustration for you and your team. To prevent this, you should find the best provider you can. There are comparison sites that make this process quick and simple for you. Be sure to look out for one with a high uptime percentage.
- Ask For Employee Input
Your employees are the ones working on the frontline, and, as such, may be able to see problems that you wouldn’t do on a regular day. Because of this, it helps to sit down and chat with your team now and then about any issues that they have spotted. You can also work together to come up with ideas on how to reduce and eliminate downtime. This is doubly beneficial, as it also shows employees you trust and care about their opinions, which is crucial.
Downtime is something no business wants to experience. It can be completely crippling, even for huge, established companies. Hopefully, by implementing these ideas, you can significantly reduce the chance of facing downtime in your company.