Chances are, when you signed up your office for high speed Internet service provider, you chose the least bandwidth you thought would deliver reasonable broadband Internet, and let it go at that.
The Web has become an indispensable tool for many office jobs (along with, admittedly, an enormous time waster), but if you thought the competitive advantage of broadband Internet stopped at e-mail and a bit of instant research, think again. High speed Internet service can be a business tool, too, with the right software and some simple training.
Covered in this guide:
1. Understanding what a high speed Internet service provider can do for you
2. Checking your current business broadband speed and choosing from broadband Internet providers
3. High speed Internet service and telecommuters
4. Hosting a Web site and Web phone calls using a broadband Internet provider
5. Collaboration over the Web using high speed Internet service
Understanding what high speed Internet service really meansIt can be a bit slippery, because what is fast for e-mail can seem Jurassic if you're trying to download images and impossible for Web telephone use or videoconferencing. And, of course, five people online use less broadband Internet capacity, or bandwidth, than 50 at a time. But, there are a couple of rules of thumb.
Check the speed of your current business broadband InternetNo matter what your service level agreement (SLA) says, your actual broadband Internet speed will vary dramatically. Take a look at the speed of your current contracted high speed Internet service from time to time and if huge discrepancies appear, call up your sales person.
Broadband Internet service keeps teleworkers' connections secureSo you have a grip on your actual capabilties. So what? Well, one of the advantages of business broadband is connecting to work from home or on the road. You'll need a virtual private network (VPN), a kind of secure tunnel between the external PC and the office network, and high speed Internet service to make it work best.
VPN contractor from the Business.com directory.
Using your broadband Internet service for Web and e-commerceMost business broadband companies will try to sell you what's called a static IP, a kind of permanent address on the Web. This allows your company to host its Web site on your own servers, taking hits from outside the company, as well as manage your own e-mail. A static IP address also allows your company to make long-distance phone calls using broadband Internet service, more cheaply.
broadband Internet providers.
High speed Internet service can make you your own Ma BellDoing your own thing with Web based phone calls, known as Voice over Internet protocol, or VoIP, can be a big savings compared to making calls through a normal phone carrier. It's more trouble, too, to administer, but if your company is already running lots of servers for other reasons, a pricier high-speed connection can actually save you money.
VoIP telephone services at Business.com
Broadband Internet providers and sharing dataThe Web is moving quickly to integrate telecommuters and far-flung offices with the main office. Part of the equation is with Web conferencing software and virtual white boards, along with broadband Internet service.
Web conferencing can be found at Business.com
- Most business broadband Internet providers give you a much faster download speed than upload, since downloading is what most Web users do. However, a faster upload speed from your high speed Internet service is worth paying for if you handle lots of images or video.
- To get the most out of your business, broadband speeds must be high enough to accomodate both the peak use and the number of users. Your broadband Internet service sales person will help you estimate this figure.
- Set policies on Internet use to keep broadband bills under control. Internet radio stations, while soothing, kill broadband connections if everyone is dialing in a station.