No matter what department or functional area within a business, ask any manager and they will agree that any form of downtime ultimately has a negative impact on a company’s bottom line. This, in fact, becomes an even more important issue when processing sales that are dependent on a connected point-of-sale system.
In today’s competitive environment, it’s imperative to ensure network connections at distributed enterprises have adequate backup across all locations. Retail locations, restaurants, kiosks, distribution centers or branch offices all require continuous connectivity to headquarters, network operations centers and secure payment processors.
Sierra Wireless provides a look at how a well-designed solution can be implemented and also deliver added value by enabling quick, remote fixes when network troubles occur.
Maintaining Critical Network Connectivity
Click through for more on how a well-designed solution can be implemented and also deliver added value by enabling quick, remote fixes when network troubles occur, as identified by Sierra Wireless.
Assess Your Risks and Requirements
Because losing a network connection can result in lost revenue, distributed enterprises like retailers need to look for simple and affordable ways to back up network connectivity that will prevent any service interruption and keep their branch locations up and running smoothly with little or no onsite IT support.
Explore Technologies for Instant Failover Solutions
Fortunately for retailers, the expanding availability of 4G LTE service offers an ideal opportunity for a quick and efficient failover solution when a wire-line connection goes down. Currently, peak LTE download speeds of 100 Mbps and upload speeds of 60 Mbps are achievable in a failover situation.
Research Solutions to Avoid Pitfalls
Though 4G LTE wireless provides new business continuity options, not all wireless backup choices constitute a best-in-class solution. While some routers come with cellular technology built-in, these typically offer limited firewall and routing capabilities and are subject to wireless reception interference. An integrated solution also represents a single point of failure and doesn’t offer a means to remotely reset, update, or configure attached equipment using a backup connection.
Weigh Solution Costs Against Performance and Reliability
While it is slightly more costly, incorporating an independent wireless gateway adds enhanced 4G LTE connectivity and leverages an enterprise router’s instant failover, routing, and firewall features to seamlessly switchover between a primary and wireless gateway. A wireless gateway also allows for better reception and can be deployed outside of “noisy” IT closets to eliminate RF interference. Retailers should also look for solutions that can fallback to 3G when 4G is unavailable.
Understand the Value of Out-of-Band Management (OOBM)
Enterprise routers are typically a single point of failure and may require an update, or sometimes just a reboot. Having OOBM capability allows network administrators to log in to routers remotely to perform configuration updates or reset commands. Once initial problems on an enterprise router have been resolved, network administrators can manage other network-connected devices. For branch locations, where little or no IT support exists, there are significant cost savings by eliminating the need for remote service calls by a technician.
Research Solutions Deployed by Similar Businesses
Money Mart, with nearly 1,500 retail locations across North America and Europe, recently embarked on a large-scale project to install backup circuits at all of its retail locations. According to Pete Wilson, telecom and network administrator for Money Mart, “having a backup system to process transactions is absolutely essential, because the cost of downtime is simply too high. In testing, we found a wireless gateway rolled over to wireless in a failover situation and offered the stability we needed to seamlessly maintain operations.”
Get more information on 4G failover solutions.