How to boost business resilience with planning

Unexpected events such as natural disasters can impact business operations in many ways. Explore these tips to help you minimise downtime and keep things moving.
· 09 April 2024 · 5 minute read

Building a more resilient business

What technology do you use to run your business? A mobile phone? Laptop? Potentially some other connected devices? We know that having reliable network connectivity is critical to help you keep your business running smoothly.

Unexpected events like natural disasters may disrupt services without warning. The impact can be unpredictable and there may be some or no warning. The length and geographic scope of a disruption can also vary.

The good news is that there are steps you can take to better prepare for the unexpected. And this can help boost your business resilience.

How we’re building a more resilient network

Building resilience in our network operations to help keep you connected is a priority for Telstra. Our Global Operations Centre operates 24x7, 365 days a year. And is staffed by a dedicated team of network professionals operating in a high-tech facility. We’re committed to investing in our networks to make them resilient to help you keep your business running.

We’re building redundancy into our networks which means that if damage occurs in one part of our network, we have back-up options to either maintain your connection or help restore it as quickly as possible. Adopting the same principle of having backup options in your business technology can help minimise unexpected disruptions.

Preparing for disaster season is also a key part of our planning. This is also something to consider for your business. Inquiries by the Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman recently found that the majority of small businesses and family enterprises do not have a current disaster preparation plan in place.

Reinforcing the resilience of your business

When issues arise, they may impact your business in various ways. Exploring back-up options for your connectivity, power, and data, can help you prepare and help minimise the impact of disruptions.

Below we explore areas to consider as part of your risk management planning.


Explore back up options for connectivity

When choosing fixed or mobile solutions for your business, take time to understand what potential back-up options are available. Below we explore back-up options for fixed and for mobile connection types.


Back-up for your business internet

Business internet with mobile back up

When you choose a plan for your business internet, check if mobile back-up is included. Telstra’s business internet plans with the Telstra Smart Modem include 4G backup.

4G backup means that if there’s a fixed-line outage and you’re in an area with 4G mobile coverage your service will automatically switch to the 4G mobile network (backup speeds can vary with maximum speed capped at 25/5 Mbps). This back-up option is built-in to the modem, so you don’t need to change devices to continue to connect to the internet.

Wi-Fi hotspotting

Activating a Wi-Fi hotspot on your mobile phone lets you share your mobile connection with other devices, but just note that this taps into the monthly data allowance on your mobile plan.

You can connect multiple devices to a single mobile service this way. But the number of devices connected to the Wi-Fi hotspot will impact the internet speed you get on your connected devices.

Mobile broadband

Mobile broadband is a wireless internet connection delivered via a mobile network. In contrast, a fixed internet connection is delivered by a landline or cable network, or the nbn™ access network. A mobile broadband device and data plan can act as a backup option offering extra data and flexibility if needed.

There are a range of laptops and tablets available that are SIM-enabled too. With an appropriate data plan you can connect them to the mobile network.


Back-up for your mobile service

When you choose a mobile service for your business it can be useful to check network coverage maps. This gives you a baseline of where you can expect to receive service.

If your mobile service is disrupted you may need to fall back on connecting your mobile to Wi-Fi which will limit you to the range of your Wi-Fi coverage, but can help keep you connected as a back-up. To be able to use your mobile for calls and texts you’ll need to enable Wi-Fi calling and SMS.

Satellite phones for extended mobile coverage

If you have more significant mobile coverage needs, you could explore satellite phones. These services are typically used by businesses operating in regional or remote locations. But businesses who have mission critical needs might also find them useful as a backup.

Telstra delivers mobile voice, SMS and data services over the Iridium satellite network. Check your coverage to find out if a Telstra Mobile Satellite solution is right for you.


Back-up for your EFTPOS solutions

Disruptions to the operation of your payments systems can be particularly challenging. So, it's important you understand the capabilities of your EFTPOS solutions. And have a plan in place in the event of a disruption.

Some EFTPOS devices come with 4G or 5G mobile back-up via an integrated SIM card. So, if you use a connected terminal to take payments, consider an option with this type of backup included.

Sometimes you might want to switch between Wi-Fi and mobile connectivity. Make sure you're clear on how to change these settings on your EFTPOS device. That way if you need to you can switch things over quickly.

Learn more about boosting resilience of EFTPOS connectivity


Backup power sources

Don’t forget to think about alternative power sources for your devices. There are a range of portable chargers and power banks solutions you can consider. They can make it easier to keep your devices charged if your main power source is disrupted.


Backing up your data

Consider business critical tasks and data

Connectivity issues can impact your access to data and applications. So, think about what this could mean for business-critical tasks. That way you can be better prepared to work around disruptions if you need to. Can you access key applications and data from different devices if you need to? Below we explore a backup strategy to consider.

Ensure access to key business data

The 3-2-1 backup strategy can help you avoid issues with being able to access your data. With this approach you’ll have more than one way to access data when you need to. You can access data on local storage devices when working offline. And if you need to work from a different location to get connected you can access data in the cloud.


Stay informed and seek support

Staying across important alerts can help you be aware of things you may need to respond to. So be clear on where you can find information to help you stay across any potential disruptions to your business.

Government agencies emergency response information

State Emergency Services (SES) can be a good source of information. They offer updates and advice on natural disasters and emergency response. Some also offer guides for disaster preparedness. These are worth considering as part of your risk management planning.

The Bureau of Meteorology may also issue warnings in your area.

Network outage information

There are a range of things that might impact your business connectivity. Some service providers may publish information about planned outages that could impact your services.

Telstra publishes information about network outages online. You can also stay informed on any outages that may be affecting your Telstra services via the MyTelstra App. Some connection issues are not related to outages. You can access troubleshooting advice to work through common issues and fixes that can help.

Sources of support

You could include a list of key sources of information and support in your risk management plan. That way if something happens, you’ll be able to assess where to get the most relevant help.

Telstra offers help and support for business customers via a range of channels. Further support for disaster relief may also be available to you during a major disaster event.

Here are other links that could be useful.

Read more about how small businesses can prepare for disasters to consider how to put in place a strong risk management plan for your business.


Connect with confidence, using internet built for business

Get fast business nbn® with help from start to finish using our dedicated nbn connection manager.

Explore more on this topic

Empower yourself to get the most from technology

Learn how to choose the right technology solutions. Get help to boost efficiency, build skills, and integrate tech.

Other articles you might like