Small companies weak on VoIP and business recovery

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Small companies weak on VoIP and business recovery

Report points to hosting.

Small and medium-sized companies in the UK are failing to make best use of their IT and telecoms resources for remote and mobile working, voice over IP and business continuity, according to a new report.

Britain's small companies have not made business continuity a foundation of the business, opting instead for rudimentary business recovery plans as an afterthought, the report concludes.

"I am surprised to see just how many SMEs still only use on-site back-up for their data. This is true for 68 per cent of respondents," said Dominic List, managing director of Comtact, the firm behind the survey. 

Comtact is a provider of hosted IT and telecoms solutions, so is naturally pushing hosting as a means to ensure robust business continuity as well as boosting efficiency from technologies like VoIP and mobile working.

The survey covered senior decision makers, mostly managing or financial directors, in 200 businesses in the south east of England with 50 to 100 employees.

VoIP was one area where small businesses are missing a trick, according to the report. Only 15 per cent are using VoIP for all or part of their telecommunications, but many are using Skype. 

"Most companies recognise Skype as a consumer product that offers very little business functionality," said report author Simon Knockton.

"However, it is encouraging to see that 52 per cent of respondents are considering VoIP deployment over the next six months."

Some 87 per cent of respondents can access email or files while outside their office, mostly using a virtual private network, but said that this diminished their access.

The Comtact report suggested that a hosted system would provide full access.
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