Hurricane Sandy – also known as Frankenstorm – made its way through the East Coast, leaving many businesses facing the decision of staying open and for how long. In many cases, this lead companies that could keep operating to seek alternative workflow methods thanks to technology.
Many larger organizations, including Wall Street and a number of educational institutions, were shut down, in some instances for two days. A recent Associated Press article highlighted how the storm affected small and midsized businesses (SMBs).
"For many small businesses, opening depended on whether employees lived close by or could work remotely," writes Joyce Rosenberg. "Businesses vulnerable to wind and water damage and power outages were forced to close. The storm also ruined business trips, meetings and presentations."
For many SMBs, losing a day or two of business can be a major setback, but the ability to stay plugged in to the office from the safety of their homes, allowed a number of businesses to stay operational – at least while the power was still on. Cloud computing strategies let employees access important information and keep companies running as if it were business as usual.
Many news organizations urged people to embrace technology as a way to track the storm and stay connected, even as the power went out. As New York City went dark, many were only able to communicate through Facebook and Twitter.
The actions of many SMBs during Hurricane Sandy highlight the reasons why technology is becoming such an important tool. IT Principals need to ensure their business can be up and running during and after a devastating storm. VARs and MSPs can act as reliable resources during these times.