Asparts of the UK shut down yesterday after experiencing their heaviest snowfallsince 1991, unified communications vendors have been talking up thebenefits of collaborative and home-working solutions.
Although it is too late to install comms solutions to overcome the current crisis, StephenBeynon, managing director of ntl:Telewest Business, said it was clearthat disruptive natural events were becoming more commonplace, "soorganisations need to have a continuity plan in place to ensure thatoperations do not hit a standstill when the worst happens".
Michael Calvert, UK general manager at Aastra, said it was unsurprising the country had ground to a halt.
"Unfortunatelythough, many companies do not have a communications infrastructurewhich is flexible enough to allow their workers to be productivewherever they are. Even if such adverse weather conditions are shortlived, the cumulated impact on companies' performance can besignificant."
"Toaddress situations where the normal service could be disrupted and havean impact on the customer experience or order intake, equipping staffto work remotely is also an important consideration to take intoaccount for contingency plans," added Calvert.
Researchconducted by the Cranfield School of Management on behalf of SiemensEnterprise Communications, out today, said that well over threequarters of UK SMEs wanted to improve productivity throughcommunications.