Shopping around for your company’s internet involves more than locating the ideal service provider in your area. Before making that purchase, you need a rough approximation of what internet speed your firm needs. Some business owners or IT personnel will dismiss this as something trivial, but computing bandwidth is actually not an easy thing to do. If you try searching online, you may come up with different results, and obsolete information will affect your speed estimates.
What is bandwidth anyway?
Also known as “internet speed,” bandwidth is the peak rate at which digital data can travel from your device onto the web at any time. Since most companies conduct business online, yours needs to have a fast connection. The more data your network can transfer at any time, the faster you can upload a huge document or stream a video conference.
An IT support team can figure out what internet speed your firm needs after running some tests and taking the number of devices your office has into account. But if you insist on making your own assessment, keep the following tips in mind:
Test your network’s speed
If you want to know that you’re getting your money’s worth out of your bandwidth, inspect the monthly statement that your internet service provider (ISP) gives you. It should clearly display the megabits per second (Mbps) that you are paying for.
Have your managed IT services provider run a speed test to find out if your online connection is close to the bandwidth speed that you agreed to buy from the ISP. If it’s way off, contact your ISP immediately to check for any connection, hardware, or subscription issues. But your network’s bandwidth can also be affected by a number of factors beyond your ISP’s scope.
Analyze how your office internet is being utilized
The two elements that influence your internet bandwidth requirement are the number of people using the connection and what they are using the bandwidth for. Your overall internet speed may fluctuate because of simultaneous downloading of huge data, as in the case when one department is streaming a video conference while an employee from another part of the office is downloading an application. It can also drop because some employees are using the office internet for social media or online games.
Basic web browsing and email
If your office requires the internet to surf the Web, send and receive emails, and download files from time to time, you won’t need a very fast online connection. For these basic tasks, a download speed of 2 Mbps should be enough. The cheapest plan that your ISP offers will be adequate for your company, especially if you only use a handful of computers.
If you stream standard definition videos in your office workstations without surround sound audio, you won’t need an ultra-fast internet connection. Short multimedia clips that are found in news websites or social media will load fine with a 3 Mbps connection, as long as your employees don’t download anything or use multiple devices at once.
If your line of business specializes in video editing or coding tasks that involve uploading or downloading large files, or if your office has many computers (such as the case of call centers), you may need to contact more than one ISP and purchase faster bandwidth plans. Even with all the equipment in your firm connecting to the internet, a bandwidth speed of 10 to 12 Mbps would be okay.
Does your business have the bandwidth it needs?
The bottom line is that bandwidth consumption can be an issue if you don’t address it properly. Purchasing and managing the appropriate bandwidth is necessary for an optimal end-user experience.
If your internet connection is not performing the way it should, have our experts at Complete Technology manage it for you. We utilize powerful tools and applications to keep businesses in Kansas City operational and efficient. Get in touch with us today, and we’ll give you a free consultation.
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