The lifeblood of Kent, Washington companies doing company in the current environment depends upon reliable Internet access. All companies, from Fortune 500 to small businesses, have functions that rely on easy, dependable and quick access to The web.
In the coming months and years, we will become increasingly dependent on our access to the internet.
The net is ubiquitous. From email to data sharing, archiving to commerce and VOIP to video conferencing, the internet is everywhere. How can your needs be met? Will a cable modem be sufficient? Metro Ethernet? Would Gigabit Internet suffice? Will your Kent company needs be met with a 50 Meg circuit, a 5 Meg circuit, 10 Meg access to The net or 100 Meg Internet access point?
Before selecting the appropriate service, your company must assess its needs. Why will you need the internet? Will you only be web surfing and emailing? Is it used for real-time data connection with cloud servers? Are you hosting data in Kent, Washington? Do remote places rely on you?
Have you thought about what will happen to your business if your high-speed Internet is interrupted by an outage? Can your business afford the downtime? How much uptime is essential to your organization? Before you buy anything, you must answer these questions.
Plainly stated, companies require high-speed access to The net. When picking the correct broadband, balancing the costs and benefits to your company is imperative. While various providers will throw around terminology like:
… do not stray from the real issues. Focus on what your company’s needs are and what capabilities and technical solutions will help satisfy them.
For most companies in Kent, some or all of the employees need access to the net. It may be needed for company research, to order office supplies or other reasons.
The best solution may rely on how many employees you have. If you have a smaller workforce, you may do fine with a smaller Internet circuit. For example, if you only employ a handful of people, a 5 or 10 Meg circuit may meet your needs. You may need more if you have more workers and those workers all need to be on the internet during the same hours.
High-speed Internet may become less important if the majority of your employees primarily use an intranet system with limited graphics and video. When they are frequently downloading things, whether documents, graphics or videos, however, speed is necessary for efficient job performance.
Do you backup information? You may need to support simultaneous connections to the web in order to sync your backup data. If you conduct remote backups from every workstation, which is advisable, this will be important.
Do you use a file-sharing service? Perhaps you use Google drive, DropBox or a different service? As a file is saved, it is pushed to the cloud and then synced back to other people’s computers. Running all your services properly, including sharing files, requires that you have the right amount of bandwidth.
High-speed business Internet access like Metro Ethernet and gigabit Internet may be viable options for you depending on your location. These can usually be found in Kent in “lit buildings” that have already been wired. Adding this high-speed Internet to your office may be surprisingly affordable and easy.
While it may be the case that bringing Metro Ethernet into a new building can cause a big dent in your wallet, bringing the connection to a suite or offices within that building does not have to. Did you know that obtaining high-speed Internet access with Metro Ethernet or gigabit Internet can often take 30 days or less? Of course, this depends upon availability.
Ask yourself this: Does we host our own servers to run APIs, websites and data feeds to external offices or business premises? Do your headquarters have a hosted Internet application that must be accessed regularly by 40 or 50 branch offices? Are you a retail organization with 10, 000 stores? Do you host the POS system for all of them? Does your legal practice host all of the data for 3, 4 or 5 offices in different places?
When data and programs are hosted centrally at one main site, people outside that location must gain access. If the internet connection is interrupted or fails, those people are unable to accomplish any work. If you need multiple connections to function at the same time from many different locations, make sure that your intranet solution can reliably support it.
If you have one office using the web, you may get by with a cable modem or a low- cost 10-megabyte circuit. It is advisable that high-speed Internet access be available at the central organization office or headquarters, including gigabit Ethernet, Metro Ethernet or some other high-speed dedicated circuits. Multiple diverse connections require support, in addition to high speed. A cable modem would likely not provide the necessary support.
Utilizing a cable modem or other less expensive circuit may seem like a good option but can result in unexpected cost. You may save money on your monthly bill but the bandwidth you get must be shared among many people. During peak hours, your connection may slow down, even though you subscribe to a cable modem with a thirty-megabyte connection. Many cable companies only deliver a set amount of bandwidth within a community. The bandwidth branches off to the multiple buildings, offices and tenants within them. You might be capped at 30-megabyte speed, but may never be able to actually reach that speed during the important hours of your organization day. Is getting 7 when you expect 30 a problem?
You can find a carrier who can provide dedicated and guaranteed bandwidth. If you want your very own bandwidth that is not used by anyone else, you should consider this. You should receive full capacity of your circuits during all hours. This is true even though you may have many buildings, businesses and tenants nearby.
As an example, look at Metro Ethernet. They provide guaranteed bandwidth in various increments. You can receive guaranteed bandwidth in increments of 100, 50, 10 and 5 megabytes. In your office out to the web you can reach gigabit speeds with gigabit providers
Here, carriers deliver enough high-speed to the building, so that it can be split among various tenants. The carrier has the right amount so that everyone gets the contracted speed that has been promised.
Realistically, while some providers in Kent offer excellent Internet bandwidth products, it is possible for a circuit to go down. The question then becomes, “how do I minimize my chance of an outage? ”
Consider redundant circuits.
We are primarily talking about two kinds of redundancy.
A single carrier, providing multiple circuits, to one customer, characterizes one form of redundancy. Redundant circuits can help protect against certain problems. They can mitigate the inconveniences when there is a failure of a physical line or a problem with the port into your router. It is possible for both circuits to go down. If your carrier has a regional problem like a widespread outage, or there is a broken line outside your building, even your redundant circuits may fail. While there is some protection, there is also some risk.
In the second type of redundancy, you bring in circuits from two different carriers. By using IP address allocations and certain routers, you can bind your connections. By doing this, it appears and behaves as a single circuit. However, despite appearances, they are actually very much separate and are redundant to each other. You will get more substantial protection from this diversity redundancy. When one carrier has a problem like an outage or some other failure, you have another one that works.
You should look for redundant circuits from carriers in Kent that do not have the same physical geographic pathways, in order to get the most redundancy. Alternatively stated, try to have your circuits enter the building on different sides from one another. They would be on outside phone poles or underground conduits in different directions and leading to different places. If you can accomplish this, you are protected from a major catastrophe. For example, if a there is a fire or some other accident that negatively affects circuits in a region, you have redundancy in a physically different direction.
access to The web costs money but the cost of NOT having reliable access to The Internet is greater. Please think about the following scenarios:
Your office uses a cable modem and, in addition to you, the carrier provides 10-15 additional tenants with circuits. What if any or all of those tenants are huge call centers taking in a massive volume of phone calls, are company that perform large file downloads or stream many videos? How will less available bandwidth affect your telephone calls? What will happen to the strength and quality of that call? Are calls lost or dropped? Will they be full of static?
Whether you are a law firm doing file sharing, an accounting practice sharing databases or a retailer operating a distributed point-of-sale system, your office is the hub for your enterprise. All of your places, whether 2 or 2000, rely on your primary Internet connection to access and retrieve data. Your circuit goes down, now what happens? Would you merely be annoyed? Would there be catastrophic consequences? Can your satellite offices perform any work at all? Can they process transactions or new orders? Dispense and receive data? Do you know what your company needs? Be sure to fully understand your requirements. It will help you choose the correct solution. Perhaps you have hundreds of clients or customers that use a hosted solution that your software business is running. You operate a service that utilizes API in order to grant access to other systems. They may use this to collect whatever data you are offering such as commodity prices, weather data or freight calculations. You may find that they are unable to reach or connect with your company servers. Customers will only take so many repeated outages. How long with they remain with your company?
Your company is entirely Internet based. What if your representatives can make no outgoing telephone calls because your circuits go down? In addition, they will be unable to answer incoming calls. You are now, essentially, out of organization. Even for the most reputable call centers that already know of and use redundancy, is it sufficient? Are your providers sufficiently reliable? Is the quality of service sufficient for your calls to be clear and reliable?
You have several different options to pick from. Your decision will be based on different factors including your organization needs and your budget. As a wrap-up:
If you have one location or office and do not feel the need to consider redundancy for your system, a smaller access to The net circuit may be all you need. A single fifty, ten or five megabyte circuit might be enough. Find out if you are in a lit building. If so, the price of Metro Ethernet or gigabit service may be affordable. Prices will vary. They are based on your location and circuit availability; speak with our engineers to learn your best options.
You have a mid-sized Kent company; higher speed Internet access required. Gigabit Internet, Metro Ethernet and other higher speed Internet circuits are options to consider. In a perfect scenario, multiple circuits from different providers will give you the most redundancy. Achieving this may not be as costly as you first thought. Using one 100-megabyte circuit instead of two 50-megabyte circuits, is one example. As a reminder; availability and costs may vary. You should speak with our experts to learn the options for your particular location.
Businesses with many locations face the greatest risk for failure. Redundant circuits are a necessity. Multiple providers or carriers are recommended. You can decrease risk during downtime by having redundant equipment as well. Have you looked at Metro Ethernet providers, gigabit Internet providers and other high-speed Internet access circuit providers? You should do so before making a decision. The best mix of carriers and services can maximize the productivity and efficiency of your company.
If you can place yourself in this category, it is essential that you have Metro Ethernet, point-to-point circuits and gigabit Internet circuits. You must have redundant circuits for multiple providers as well as redundant hardware in your office to ensure your uptime. Having plenty of bandwidth will help avoid interruptions or decreased speed that sometimes occurs during spikes in usage. Both your hardware and circuits must be capable of supporting a vast number of simultaneous and fast connections.
There is great risk of failing circuits or insufficient bandwidth. You need to have the right circuit or circuits to meet your demands while staying within your budget. You have to select the optimal combination of hardware and circuits, which is a daunting task.
Our engineers can help. We will analyze your requirements and needs and create a free action plan for you. You want your organization to run smoothly. We will look at your current usage levels and demand levels and design a plan that meets your needs at a cost that makes sense for you.
If you would like to arrange for an assessment, please click here to complete the contact information form to the right. You can call our office as well. Assessments are done in as few as two days or within 48 hours.