East Yorkshire ISP KC has reported a 30% surge in internet traffic on their broadband network for the past week, which is believed to have been caused by heavy snow conditions forcing more people to work from home over cloud and Virtual Private Network (VPN) based services.
Insurance company RSA recently estimated that the United Kingdom loses £473 million each day to disruption caused by snow, with one third of the workforce staying at home either because it’s too difficult to travel or to look after children (Schools are closed). But such estimates often fail to fully consider the impact of internet provision.
Gary Young, KCs Business and Consumer Director, told ISPreview.co.uk:
“With increased connectivity and broadband speeds there’s no longer an excuse for bad weather to cause businesses to grind to a halt. It is so easy and cost-effective for employees to work from home using a computer and a mobile phone, and by having the right software and broadband service in place.
Any business that has had to shut or run skeleton teams over the past few days has been in danger of missing a customer contact or a sales opportunity, and in today’s challenging economic climate that‘s not something that companies can afford to do. As a result of the current disruptions I expect enabling remote working has just gone to the top of the list of many small business owners priorities in 2013.”
On the other hand not everybody does a traditional office job and some work can only be completed effectively when active and present in the workplace. Similarly working from home, especially if you have children that are eager to play in the snow or which require constant supervision, is often a lot more challenging than may first appear.
Never the less our acceptance of an increasingly online world also makes it ever harder to take time away from work, which now has the ability to follow us around the world. Sometimes even adults need a “snow day” .