4 Essential Qualities Your ISP Must Have
Speed is important, but there’s more to consider
Choosing an internet service provider (ISP) is likely one of the most important decisions your business will make. The internet is integral to the way your company communicates, services, sells, profits and operates on a daily basis. With a decision as important as an ISP, no business can afford to take chances. Before coming to the table for this important decision, it’s crucial to know what you require from an ISP. Here are 4 essentials your next service provider must have.
Capable bandwidth options
Speed and reliability: It’s a given every business requires both. Find an ISP prepared to go deeper. The right ISP can design a network for your business that has your existing needs in mind, and help you prepare for future growth to ensure the service continuously meets your needs. Yes, consider speed and reliability, but factor in how much bandwidth your employees need to complete their daily tasks, then take into account the software, equipment, applications and devices, that are used and how they might impact the reliability and security of your service. Planning for growth? Anticipate moving your technology to the cloud? Ask your ISP to consider both your present needs and future goals.
Service and support availability
Businesses shouldn’t underestimate the value of a locally based, readily available and technically proficient support staff. Network downtime isn’t just inconvenient. In business, it can be costly. Having access to always available customer service and technical support teams will minimize service interruptions and lower your risk of lost time and lost money. Can you reach your ISP anytime by phone or live chat? Can techs be on-site when you need them? Is the support team local? All are big bonuses.
Focus on security
Data breaches, hacking, data privacy—cybersecurity is all over the news, and for any responsible ISP, these topics should be top-of-mind. A compromised network can devastate even the most adaptable businesses. Be sure the ISP your business considers has protocols in place to not only respond to, but prevent a cybersecurity event. Security should be multifaceted—from passwords, to hardware to network infrastructure. Ask whether the ISP can prepare your business with proper data backup procedures, data protection and, in the event something should happen, the resources to help your business recover.
You already know that internet service is different from any other kind of product purchase. Consider the business benefits of an ISP that was more than a provider, but a partner and a resource. There are multiple benefits to ISPs that offer more than the internet. Can the provider offer business phone systems and service? How about IT, security and even construction? You might be able to save costs long-term when you work with a provider that can offer more. You can forget the hassle of dealing with separate vendors and multiple bills—and when you need help, you always know who is accountable.
The internet is tied to many business processes; choosing a service provider is a complex decision. Business don’t just “get online.” They use the internet to deliver the best performance, services or products, security their customers can trust and a user experience that meets their expectations. It’s crucial to choose an ISP that understands your business needs. Start the discussion by asking the right questions, and don’t leave out these three essential qualities.