Hosted PBX and Business Continuity in Times of Crisis

With Superstorm Sandy causing untold destruction and massive disruptions to large swathes of New Jersey and New York City, some organizations have begun to wonder how, exactly, they’d fair if they were hit by a massive weather systems, while other organizations are left with the mess of figuring out how they’re going to rebuild their communications infrastructure in a manner that will ensure continuity no matter what happens. The solution both of these sets of organizations are looking for lies in a hosted PBX – the only cost effective communications solution that will help them get back up and running as quickly as possible no matter what happens to their HQ.

How Hosted PBX Safeguards Against Disaster

There’s an obvious reason why a hosted PBX system will prevent your organization’s communication systems from blacking out in the case of a disaster, and that’s the fact the guts of your hosted PBX system or service are not hosted in your organization’s premises. The equipment enabling hosted PBX systems is located offsite, in a secure and redundant data center well away from whatever catastrophe threatened to take out your organization’s lines of communication.

If your organization’s PBX hardware isn’t located in your organization’s offices then no amount of flooding, fires or miscellaneous damage can prevent your employees from taking incoming calls the day after your disaster.

But What About the Handsets Themselves?

Now, it’s a little misleading to say your entire PBX system will be located elsewhere if you opt to sign up for a hosted VoIP solution. After all, even with a hosted PBX system you will still need to house your phones at your offices. In the event of the disaster, those phones are liable to take a beating and find themselves inoperable the next day. And even if your phones are miraculously still functional the day after a disaster that doesn’t mean your office space itself is going to be accessible or usable. So either way, whether your phones are damaged beyond repair or if your office needs some serious repair, it doesn’t really matter if you have a hosted or a local PBX solution, right? In both situations your communication lines are going to be down, right?

Not exactly. With a hosted PBX solution your organization doesn’t need to use its normal every-day work phones. With a hosted PBX solution the phones you have in your office ring when your clients give you a call because your hosted PBX provider routes all incoming communications to them. But your provider could just as easily route all incoming calls to another phone bank, to someone’s home line, or even to a cell phone. Which means even if your office is totally decimated, even if your telephone hardware gets smashed and flooded to pieces, when you sign up with a hosted PBX solution your employees can run business as usual the next day if you simply have your provider route all incoming calls to workable phones your employees have access to.

Anticipating Disaster

No one knows when a communication-crippling natural catastrophe is going to occur, which is why it’s so important to be prepared at all times. Sign up with a hosted PBX provider to take the guts of your communication out of your office and to put them somewhere safe and sound. Set up contingency rules within your system (often possible through a simple online control panel) before something bad happens, or wait until a disaster and immediately set up a communication system where your hosted PBX provider starts routing calls to usable phones.

A few simple preventative measures can go a long way towards ensuring your organization’s continuity no matter what happens, and the first step you need to take is signing up for a hosted PBX solution.