How Technology Downtime Can Diminish Your Company's Productivity and Profitability

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When was the last time you completed an entire work day without using a single piece of technology?  

Unless we've taken a trip back in time, you're not likely to have a solid answer to this question. In today's world, it doesn't matter what you do or which industry you're in, technology is the driving force behind your bottom line. 

With so much relying on power buttons, clouds, and user-friendly interfaces, it's no wonder that productivity and profitability can come to a screeching halt when you experience technology downtime.

IT issues are inevitable - do you have a good strategy in place? [DOWNLOAD INFOGRAPHIC]

Google provides a recent example of the way a shot can be heard around the world when something goes wrong on a server. This past June, the search engine giant's calendar and chat features went down unexpectedly, leaving users who relied on these essential elements completely in the dark. Users Tweeted exasperated posts such as, "Google calendar is down! My life is in shambles," and, "Google Calendar is down. All meetings are canceled. Everyone go home."

Although these comments are obviously sarcastically said in jest, Google's downtime exposed a very real problem that occurs when technology takes a temporary nosedive. Just five years ago, informationweek.com reported that $26.5 billion per year was lost annually as a result of IT downtime, which translated to an average of roughly $150,000 per business for each of the 200 companies surveyed. When you consider inflation and an ever-increasing reliance on technology, this average has likely increased since 2010.

Technology downtime can mean anything from a simple slip of Outlook's functionality to a total server meltdown. In either case, big dollar losses can result from even seemingly small incidents. A single minute of IT downtime in the auto industry can cost $22,000 as a result of unexpected outages, according to businessinsider.com. One minute of flight delays equates to $65, which can quickly add up to substantial costs across an entire fleet full of passengers.

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The moral of the story is this: technology downtime and IT hiccups are going to happen. They're a fact of life. However, it's important to realize that not all IT systems are created equal, and some options simply aren't built to withstand the tests of time or the amount of work your company needs them to produce. It's always essential to have a good disaster recovery plan in place to help pick up the pieces after a server crash or technology mishap, but, more importantly, it's vital to employ a solid IT provider that can navigate situations and troubleshoot problems before they occur.

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