With the 24/7 nature of business today, the availability and uptime of crucial resources play a vital part in the overall success of an enterprise. To ensure that business continuity is maintained, companies must face the challenges that they face every day. One of the challenges is the possibility of downtime.
The impact of downtime is costly, disruptive, and unacceptable in today’s highly competitive business world. It can be caused by various reasons, ranging from accidental deletion of data applications failing to advanced cyberattacks. If you don’t have a reliable BCDR solution implemented, an event of downtime could be costly and tarnish the reputation of your company.
What Does Downtime Mean in Business?
The term “downtime” refers to a time in the business process or production stop due to an application’s unavailability due to technical issues, an outage on the network, or a natural catastrophe. When the computer system, server, or network is down or inaccessible, and employees are not productive — they are in a position not to conduct business or assist customers. If you don’t have a thorough disaster recovery plan in place, these downtimes could disrupt your company and, in certain instances, may cause irreparable harm.
Types of Downtime
The term “downtime” can broadly be classified into planned downtime and unplanned time.
The planned downtime is scheduled and anticipated prior to time and is typically carried out on weekends, holidays, or even after hours. This will ensure that normal work operations continue and that the productivity of employees is not affected. It could be planned to perform regular maintenance or inspections or repairs, software/hardware upgrades, or testing.
Since planned downtime is planned, managed, and controlled, it shouldn’t affect the business if it’s done correctly. It is crucial to plan rest in order to ensure that applications, systems, and servers are updated and working at maximum capacity. During scheduled downtime, IT professionals can also test their plans to find the potential dangers and correct the issues before they become serious issues.
Unplanned downtime, however, is not planned unexpectedly and may occur at any time. It can occur due to various reasons, including malfunctioning software or hardware or human error, as well as natural or malicious attacks. Unplanned downtime is a surprise and happens without warning; stopping it from happening can be a difficult task. No matter the cause, unexpected downtime could cause your company to go to a halt. But, if you implement the right business continuity strategy to minimize the effect of downtime to the greatest extent.
What Are the Causes of Downtime?
There are many causes for downtime. The main reasons are listed in the following sections:
Human Error Whatever the cause, whether the error was caused by accident or negligence, human error is one of the main causes of downtime that is not planned. Unintentionally, an employee deletes files un, plugging cables, or not adhering to the standard procedures can result in expensive downtime. Human error is inevitable, but with ongoing training and a well-documented IT policy or checklist and procedures, the likelihood of it happening is decreased.
Hardware/Software Failure Incompatible hardware or software increases the risk of failure in applications and system downtime. Hardware and software that are out of date can also cause poor performance, which could affect productivity. If patches are not applied with the proper testing, it could cause a complete system to fail.
Device MisconfigurationDevice configuration issues are a significant cause of unexpected downtime. Incorrect configurations can lead to security holes in the network and make it susceptible to cyber-attacks. To avoid errors in structure, it is possible to automate the process instead of making the configuration manually. Check the designs in a lab environment prior to making modifications on your computer.
IssuesBugs that affect the server’s operating systems can affect its performance and cause security problems. If patches aren’t implemented at the right time or not applied with adequate testing, it could cause issues with applications and result in the server failing.
Cybersecurity threats: Cyberthreats that include sophisticated ransomware and phishing are among the most risky and prevalent reasons for IT downtime and could cause your business to stop. Criminals can exploit weaknesses in your network as well as infiltrate systems and access confidential information. Training employees and implementing security tools like spam filters, multifactor authentication, and encryption of files can be a significant step in overcoming cybersecurity issues.
Costs for downtime may vary based on the nature and size of your company and the duration of rest. According to Statista’s research, which included participants from all over the world, 25% of respondents reported that the average hourly cost of their servers ranged between $301,000 to $400,000.
A recent study among the Fortune 1000 conducted by IDC discovered that the cost of an infrastructure breakdown equals $100,000 for each hour, while the total cost of application downtime that is not planned for per year is $1.25 billion up to $2.5 billion.
In a recent study that was conducted through Infrascale Infrascale, 10 percent of SMBs stated that their hourly cost of downtime was higher than $50,000. For 13% of them, it was in the range of $40,001 to $50,000. For 25 percent of SMBs that were surveyed, the cost per hour of downtime was between $20,001 to $40,000. A smaller portion (26 percent) reported a loss of between $10,000 and $20,000, while 27% of them said the cost of downtime per hour was less than $10,000.
Downtime Cost Calculator
Knowing the price of downtime can help you determine the effect it has on your company. Utilize the downtime calculator as well as the steps to determine the exact cost of downtime.
Calculate Revenue/Hour (average week’s revenue divided by 40 hours) (or (average income per month/30 calendar days).
What percentage of revenue-generating industries depend on the availability of their servers? E-commerce businesses are 100% dependent on uptime, while a brick-and-mortar shop might be only 20% dependent.
Determine how much revenue is lost per hour in each part of the company during downtime. If the e-commerce company mentioned above earns $100 per hour, they will be losing $400 in just four hours. In contrast, a brick-and-mortar shop that generates $100 per hour suffers a loss of $80 within four hours.
Other Costs and Effects of Downtime
Beyond financial loss, There are also other repercussions of downtime for businesses to be prepared for if they’re not. Based upon the duration and duration of rest, it may cause both short- and long-term consequences for your company. Below are a few of the most significant effects of rest.
Loss of Productivity: When downtime occurs due to an outage in the network, the mission-critical systems are not available to use. Without vital applications as well as web and design services, employees would not be able to do their job. Therefore, they are unable to work in a solitary manner. The duration of an idle period is based on the length of the time in which they are inactive.
Lost business opportunities: In today’s interconnected digital age, where businesses depend heavily on app uptime and availability, even a minute of downtime could have negative effects on your organization. The rest could result in negative experiences for your customers, such as not being able to access your services or products. At the same time, employees are unable to help them as the tools are not in operation. This can cause customers to leave as well as potential customers.