How Bonded Broadband can Facilitate Effective Collaboration
The internet has become central to the way that we work and do business in the modern world. In recent years, we’ve seen the cloud gain mainstream traction, mobility enter the workplace and communications improve across the board. A business without a fast and effective internet connection is one that loses a significant competitive advantage.
It’s not always possible for businesses to access a high-speed connection however. In rural areas of the UK, it’s thought that 3% of premises are still struggling by on connections slower than 2Mbps. When compared to those businesses that can access fibre connections, these rural companies are likely to be less innovative, to struggle with effective communications and to have less choice when it comes to software products.
Bonded Broadband for Faster Connections
The answer to this, for many businesses, lies in bonded broadband. This bonds two or more ADSL lines in order to provide a faster and more stable connection to businesses.
Telecommunications are an essential part of every business and in recent years we’ve also seen changes take place in the telecoms industry. VoIP is one such change, which is not a new technology, but which has become more and more popular with business users. This is due to the lower cost, when compared to a traditional PBX system, and better voice technology coupled with further communications tools.
Cloud Products and the Internet
Those businesses that don’t have access to a relatively fast internet connection are those that lose out on the opportunity to use cloud products such as hosted VoIP, unified communications, hosted desktop and other SaaS (Software as a Service) products. Infrastructure cloud services are similarly inaccessible, meaning that businesses that can’t access decent connection speeds can find their IT options seriously limited.
It’s well documented that the cloud facilitates collaboration which in turn improves productivity across the enterprise.
Further to this, the cloud offers
- Lower costs – cloud services use monthly payment models which mean that little capital expenditure is required to access a range of software and other solutions (such as storage, for example).
- Improved communications – the use of hosted VoIP and unified communications enable a centralised means of communicating with customers, suppliers and partners without the need for an expensive telephony system being installed.
- Accessibility to IT infrastructure – IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) enables businesses to have some or all of the IT infrastructure – such as storage, email, and security – in the cloud, doing away with the need for a full, costly network to be installed at the premises. Rather, employees can access all of their work and other documents using a thin client whilst it’s all stored at the data centre.
Accessibility to Cloud Services
However, without a fairly fast internet connection, cloud services can’t be accessed as they exist in a data centre and have to be accessed online, through a standard browser interface. This is a problem for many businesses as without access to the services which are transforming many companies, they can’t remain competitive or innovate effectively.
The link between use of the cloud, collaboration and productivity are now well-documented.
A 2013 Forbes Insight Survey found that:
- The cloud accelerates business results – 82% of leaders agreed that cloud collaboration tools helped businesses to execute faster than without the tools. This can help to shorten time to market, enable faster upgrade cycles and respond quicker to competitive challenges.
- The cloud enhances collaboration – 87% of leaders said that the cloud enabled a “true breakthrough in collaboration” and enhanced the business in areas such as product and service delivery, communications, information sharing and group problem solving.
- The cloud enables more efficient business processes – 90% of leaders reported that cloud-based collaboration could improve business processes, including purchasing, manufacturing, sales and technical support.
- Collaboration in the cloud facilitates innovation – 93% of leaders said that cloud collaboration “stimulates innovation” and that it’s an “almost unavoidable consequence” when it came to providing all employees, including executives, with new and improved ways of sharing information.
While the cloud has been considered an IT ‘discussion’, 75% of leaders taking part in the survey said that executives outside of IT have become increasingly involved in choosing and implementing cloud services and collaboration tools. This means that cloud collaboration is “a broader business discussion” than is usually seen with regards to business leaders and technological product choices.
According to Bruce Rogers, Chief Insights Officer, Forbes Media,
“The ability to collaborate in the cloud is becoming a key driver of competitive advantage. Leading companies are doing more to foster cloud-based collaboration—not only internally, but also with an ever-wider swath of external groups including customers, suppliers, partners, and even regulators.”
“The benefits of cloud-based collaboration include greater efficiency, organizational dexterity, and innovation to name only a few.”
Cloud Equals Innovation
Those businesses that cannot access cloud services – and therefore collaboration tools – will struggle to maintain any competitive advantage when compared with those that do. This means that companies which don’t have access to good internet speeds will lose out unless they are prepared to implement a solution such as bonded broadband. However, bonded broadband is an accessible solution that can use a business’s existing broadband lines. It’s not particularly expensive either – prices start at £15 per month – but could help to improve business processes, collaboration, communications and overall revenue.
With this in mind, it’s a solution that should be considered if your business is to remain competitive, innovative and agile.
Are you struggling to perform day-to-day business tasks due to a poor or slow internet connection?
Call us on 01886 884030 to discuss how we can help your business take advantage of the cloud through a faster connection.