Reliable Internet access is the lifeblood of Washington, District of Columbia companies and their organization. The company functions of every company, whether it is a small business or on the Fortune 500, from Fortune 500, depends upon fast and reliable Internet access.
We will become increasingly dependent on Internet access as the months and years progress.
The web is ubiquitous. From email to data sharing, archiving to commerce and VOIP to video chat, the net is everywhere. What is the best solution for you? Perhaps a cable modem is all you need. Your needs may point to Metro Ethernet as a solution. You may need Gigabit Internet. Does your business in Washington, District of Columbia need one of these: 10 Meg access to The net, a 100 Meg access to The net point, a 50 meg circuit or a 5 meg circuit?
The needs of your particular company must be determined before you can select an appropriate service. Will web surfing and email be your primary use of the net? Is connecting with cloud servers and sharing real time data the main use of the internet? Are you hosting data in Washington? Do remote locations rely on you?
What if your high-speed Internet is disrupted by an outage? What will happen to your organization? How might the downtime cause problems for your business? Is uptime essential? Before you buy anything, you must answer these questions.
Plainly stated, companies require high-speed Internet access. You need to analyze and balance the costs and benefits to your company before choosing the right broadband internet. While many service providers throw around terminologies such as:
… 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.
At any company in Washington some employees, if not all employees, need some type of access to the web if they are to properly perform their job duties. Whether it is to speak with shippers, do research or place orders, Internet access is required.
Perhaps the size of your work force may determine the solution that best fits your needs. An Internet circuit of 5 -10 megabytes might be enough for your company if you only have a few people working for you. If you have 50 employees who are using the net simultaneously, you may need more.
High-speed Internet may become less important if the majority of your employees primarily use an intranet system with limited graphics and video. On the other hand, Internet speed becomes dramatically more important when they are required to regularly download things like documents or videos.
Are you performing routine backups? 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.
Are you using a service such as DropBox or Google drive to share files? As a file is saved, it is pushed to the cloud and then synced back to other people’s computers. You need to have sufficient bandwidth to support this function while also supporting every other service.
Your company location may cause you to think about high-speed organization Internet access such as Metro Ethernet and/or gigabit Internet. They are usually contained in “lit buildings” in Washington that have already been wired by a carrier. If you’d like to install high-speed Internet in your office, you should know that it might be more affordable than you realize.
While bringing Metro Ethernet to a new building can be an expensive proposition, bringing that connection to a suite within the building is not. 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.
Do you have your own company servers that run APIs, websites or feeds for offsite offices or companies? Are your corporate headquarters with a hosted application utilized by 50 branch offices? Perhaps you are in retail and host the point of sale (POS) system for thousands of stores? Are you an attorney with offices multiple cities or states? Do you have one office hosting data for several locations?
If you host programs, data or information centrally, people outside of the central location need to have access. If the net connection is interrupted or fails, those people are unable to accomplish any work. Is the intranet solution you are choosing sufficiently reliable? Is it stable enough to support simultaneous connections from different sites?
An inexpensive 10 Meg circuit may be enough if you have one office that needs to surf the web. A cable modem may also be adequate in this situation. High-speed dedicated circuits, Metro Ethernet or gigabit Ethernet are advisable for company headquarters. High-speed alone is not enough. They must also need to be capable of supporting many diverse connections. A cable modem would likely be insufficient.
Utilizing a cable modem or other less expensive circuit may seem like a good option but can result in unexpected cost. While the monthly rate is lower, the bandwidth is generally shared among other tenants. During peak hours, your connection may slow down, even though you subscribe to a cable modem with a thirty-megabyte connection. Only a certain amount of bandwidth may be available in a community. Many cable companies have limits on the amount they can deliver. That bandwidth branches off to different buildings and then to various tenants within those buildings. The 30-meg speed you are capped out sounds good but it is possible that you will never reach that speed during company hours. Is getting 7 when you expect 30 a problem?
Other carriers do offer dedicated and guaranteed bandwidth. In this situation, you do not have to share bandwidth. The bandwidth is all yours and is fully allocated to the needs of your business. Regardless of neighbors, or other tenants, you should have the full capacity of your circuit at all times.
Five Meg, ten Meg, fifty Meg and 100 Meg circuits of guaranteed bandwidth are available with Metro Ethernet. If you want to reach gigabit speeds from your organization out to the web, you can by using a gigabit Internet provider.
In these scenarios, carriers deliver a large quantity of high-speed to a building. The quantity must be enough so that it can split the circuit and deliver to every tenant. Whatever amount has been guaranteed in each tenant’s contract is the amount they receive.
While certain carriers offer superior Internet bandwidth products in Washington, District of Columbia, the reality is that it is possible for a circuit to go down. You must ask yourself: “how do I lessen the chance of an outage? ”
You may be a candidate for redundant circuits.
There are two types of redundancy to consider.
The first is where you get multiple circuits from one carrier. This provides some protection when there are certain failures. Multiple circuits can help for example, when there is a physical line issue or a problem with a router port. If your carrier experiences a regional outage or you have a line broken outside of your building, you may lose the use of all of your circuits. You get some protection, but also some risk.
You can also achieve redundancy by utilizing different carriers to bring in and establish your circuits. By using IP address allocations and certain routers, you can bind your connections. By doing this, it appears and behaves as a single circuit. In fact, they are totally redundant and separate. This redundancy, referred to as diversity redundancy, offers much greater protection. In the event a carrier goes down, you will not have to worry. You will have a perfectly live carrier there to keep things moving.
You want maximum redundancy. In order to achieve this, look for redundant circuits from different carriers with different physical geographic pathways in Washington. If at all possible, you want to obtain circuits entering the premises on different sides. The circuits would be attached to telephone poles (or underground conduits) in different directions leading to different data centers or central offices. What if there is some kind of catastrophic incident such as a fire or accident that impacts circuits within a region? Now, you have redundancy in an alternative physical direction.
Even though access to The net comes with a cost, you will save money if you make sure it is dependable. Unreliable access will end up costing you more in the long run. Consider these scenarios:
Are you on a cable modem and your carrier is providing circuits to dozens of other office suites in your building? It is possible that during normal business hours, those tenants might be downloading large files or watching continuous videos. They might be getting a lot of phone calls. As the amount of available bandwidth diminishes, what happens to your phone calls? How will the quality of that phone call be affected? Will you lose calls? Inaudible (choppy) to your customers?
Your office is the hub of your enterprise: You might be a law practice that shares files, a retail operation that utilizes POS systems or a large accounting firm that needs to share databases. Your primary Internet connection is solely responsible for smoothly granting access and sending data to all of your locations whether you have two or two thousand. If your circuit goes done, what happens next? Would it cause mere annoyance or utter disaster? Is work even possible at your other sites? What about new orders? Dispense and receive data? Do you know what your organization needs? Be sure to fully understand your requirements. It will help you choose the correct solution. What if you are a software company? Perhaps you are running a hosted solution and it must be used by multiple customers; maybe even hundreds. You may operate a service like this: other systems communicate with yours via an API to figure out freight prices, stock prices, to compile weather data or receive any other information that you provide. What if these other systems have difficulty connecting your servers? How will repeated outages affect your customers? Will they remain customers?
Is the web integral to the proper function of your organization? Do you rely on it entirely? Should your circuits stop working, imagine your people being unable to make any outbound phone calls. Your representatives would also be unable to answer calls. Basically, you are done. Is redundancy enough? Many of the finest call centers with the best reputations already understand and use redundancy. They should consider if they have sufficient protection. Make sure your carriers are as reliable as possible. Are you getting quality service so that your calls are clear and consistent?
You have no shortage of options. Your choices will largely depend on your budget, in addition to the other requirements of your business. As a wrap-up:
Sometimes redundancy is not crucial to you. For example, If you are a small organization, with just one office location, a single access to The Internet circuit may be adequate. You may get by with one 50, 10 or even 5 megabyte circuit. Gigabit service and Metro Ethernet options seem expensive. If you are in a lit building, however, they can be less than you think. Look into it. Prices change based on your location and the availability of circuits. Please speak with our engineers about what options best suit your needs.
You have a mid-sized Washington, District of Columbia company; higher speed access to The web required. Gigabit Internet, Metro Ethernet and other higher speed Internet circuits are options to consider. Ideally, multiple circuits from multiple providers will provide you with the greatest redundancy. You can sometimes achieve this without doubling costs. For example, you may use 2 fifty meg circuits instead of 1 one hundred meg circuit. Availability and costs vary. In order to find out the options available for you, in your location, you need to speak with one of our seasoned experts.
What companies have the highest risk for failure; those with multiple places. Redundant circuits are essential. Varied providers are optimal. Additionally, you should consider redundant equipment (routers and switches) in your facility to minimize the risk of downtime. Take a careful look at Ethernet access services, Metro Ethernet providers and gigabit Internet providers. Research other high-speed Internet access circuit providers also and make an informed decision. Finding the best combination of services, providers and equipment can go a long way toward helping your business run as efficiently as possible.
For businesses that fit this description, it is essential to have gigabit Internet circuits, point-to-point high-speed Internet circuits and Metro Ethernet Internet circuits. You must have redundant circuits for multiple providers as well as redundant hardware in your office to ensure your uptime. Spikes or sudden increase in usage can result in Internet slowdowns or disruptions in service. You can decrease the risk of these events by having sufficient bandwidth. Both your hardware and circuits must be capable of supporting a vast number of simultaneous and fast connections.
Insufficient bandwidth and failing circuits are present tremendous risk to your business. Your ideal single circuit or multiple circuits should stay within your budget while still meeting your demands. You have to select the optimal combination of hardware and circuits, which is a daunting task.
Our engineers will analyze your needs and requirements and develop a free action plan for you. We will look at your current usage, demand levels and scope out a design to give you the resources you need while keeping your business up and running at a reasonable cost.
Please click here if you wish to complete the contact form on the side of this page. Alternatively, call our office to schedule an assessment. Assessments are completed in as little as 48 hours.