Recent years have seen severe weather events make a tremendous impact on business owners, resulting in lost and delayed sales, increased expenses for repair work, and the delayed resumption of normal business activity. Such events have only reinforced the need for a documented disaster recovery plan for your business.
Every day that a disaster puts the average small business or midsize company offline and out of office costs big—a median cost of $12,500 per day, according to a survey by the software company Symantec.
Downtime, in which employees are out of the office and business is suspended, is certainly part of that cost. And while it is an often-overlooked aspect of disaster recovery, it is a circumstance that can be remedied using responsible telecommuting policies (even if those policies are only activated in times of need) and new business collaboration tools designed to keep your workers working anytime, anywhere, and even during extreme weather conditions, if needed.
Virtual meetings are one such tool. Virtual meeting software and collaboration tools like video conferencing and web conferencing go even further than cloud-based email and file storage (which can also be helpful as part of a disaster recovery plan). They enable real-time, face-to-face communication with anyone, not just those inside the company’s firewall, enabling businesses to remain connected with customers, vendors, partners and prospects during a disaster.
The right virtual meeting software can go even further to enable your workforce to work outside the office with just a charged laptop (or other mobile device) and Internet connectivity. Here are some pointers on what to look for:
Security is a consideration all its own; it is incredibly important when enabling work outside the office, especially in a time of disaster. Make sure to choose a virtual meetings solution that protects your company’s data, with such security protocols as:
With only an Internet connection and a battery-powered mobile device, smart businesses can implement virtual meetings solutions that can keep crucial operations stable during a disaster. By choosing secure virtual meetings technology and smart telecommuting policies, disaster recovery management can keep businesses up and running—even when the office is offline.
Blakely Thomas-Aguilar began her career as a technology expert at one of the world’s largest technology companies before settling into her true passion of content creation, collaboration and business education. She lives in Atlanta, GA, with her husband and three children. She contributes to the content strategy initiatives of PGi, a global leader in virtual meetings.
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