COVID-19 has changed the way we live our life today. Things that were necessary before have become unimportant today like your metro cards and sunglasses.
While the need for social distancing trumps all other concerns, work from home has become an obligation for employees.
With work from home becoming the new normal, the internet has become as important as any other utilities. The internet service providers have seen a great hike in demand for broadband internet services as one cannot simply survive on mobile data.
Not most almost every business now uses the internet for everything from the communication (e-mails, VOIP) to digital payments. It has pretty much become impossible for businesses to operate without the internet.
Net connectivity being of paramount importance, employees have to take care that all essentials are in place. Reliable internet has become a basic necessity.
To ensure seamless connectivity here are some tips to choose an internet plan while working from home:

SELECT AN APPROPRIATE INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDER (ISP)

Availability

Availability is a big deciding factor, especially in rural areas. They have very few options to select from. Usually, there is a monopoly in rural areas and people do not even get to choose. If you live in a tier-1 or tier-2 city, you might find plenty of options. Hence choosing an internet service provider largely depends upon your location. Check for those who have offices close to your area.

Speed

The speed of the internet is one of the crucial factors for deciding because who doesn’t want the fastest internet? While the demand of internet has skyrocketed during the lockdown, work from home employees must look for a fast internet connection that does not disrupt their daily use.
Most companies advertise speed but don’t expect that you will receive the same speed. Check with your neighbors and online reviews.

Cost

This is the factor where most of the companies lose or win their customers. A balance between price and speed is desired by all.
Well, some professionals do not mind paying a good amount for speed and reliability but for employees who do not feel the need to have fast internet connection may sacrifice speed for the money.
Hence it all depends on the kind of role you have in the company and the tasks you perform on a daily basis.

Type of Connection

It is a big deciding factor in how fast the internet feels. There are many types of internet connection available like
• Satellite Internet which is ‘slow’ (the reason is pure physics)
• Cable-Internet- They are slower than fiber optic internet but offer broadband speed which meets the needs of small and medium-sized companies
• Fiber Optic Internet has the fastest speed which offers speed up to 10 Gbps, symmetrical upload and download bandwidth.

CHOOSE THE BEST SUITABLE INTERNET PLAN

Know your needs before you begin to look for options in the market. Your needs will be determined by the kind of work you do. Make points of things that will be of most value while choosing an internet plan. This will help you from not wasting time and choosing the best plan.
Keep in mind how many people are sharing the internet at home. What are the different kinds of purposes for which it will be used?
Let’s say your work involves sharing heavy files and video conferencing on a daily basis then an internet plan with speed and reliability will be of the most value, right?

Tips

• Check if the plan which you have shortlisted offers enough data per month because you would not want to pay extra every month for additional data.
• Manage your data smartly.
Usually, data packs come with a certain data cap i.e.; you can use fast internet till a limit of are used GB (let’s say 200 GB) and then your internet will run on a minimum speed (let’s say 1Mbps).
Higher internet speeds and improved apps make you consume more data. Hence you end using your data at the beginning of the month and by the end of the month, you have to survive on slow internet.
This circle goes on every month. Therefore, keep a check on which apps are consuming most of your data e.g. online games, streaming, video-calls consume your more data than sharing e-mails or texts on WhatsApp. You can divide the usage of data and limit your daily consumption accordingly. This way you will still have enough data left by the end of the month.
• Since all the GB you get with a net pack gets drained by the end of the month, try to look for the data packs which offer you unlimited GB. This way you will stay stress-free from worrying about using your data wisely and paying any additional charges.

THE RIGHT ROUTER

Do you find it difficult to transfer files and documents? That’s because we usually don’t pay attention to minor details while choosing a router for your home or offices.
Choosing the right location for a router is as important as choosing the right router itself. They should not be kept in an enclosure or area blocked by too many items around. A surface equidistant from floor and ceiling will be an ideal place to keep your router.
The routers are available in different bandwidths. Buy the router with a bandwidth of at least AC1200, any lower than this will give you a slower speed.
Routers come in three types of processors, single-core, double-core, and quad-core. A router with dual-core should be preferred as it can manage more data. Also, select a router with at least a RAM of 128 MB.
Choose your router wisely because it as important as your wi-fi connection.

RELIABILITY

Reliability is the key factor for business customers because they cannot afford to be in a position of being stressful and counterproductive. Customer services go hand in hand with reliability.
An unreliable internet connection can become a massive challenge while working from home. Always compare your options and choose which gives you value for money.
These are the factors which will help you in identifying if the ISP is reliable or not:

Network Uptime

The internet is the backbone of your business and none of the factors (routers, computers, phones, web browsers, e-mails, payment processors) will matter if your internet is not working. Hence internet uptime is the percentage of time an ISP’s internet service is active. The better the uptime guarantee the less you have to worry about losing access to online portals and critical services. Without reliable internet you are likely to experience more disruptions which will leave you unable to connect with prospects and customers.

Internet Outages

No matter if it’s a big scale company or a home user, one can never be immune to internet outages. If your company’s major operations are run on internet, you cannot afford internet downtime (percentage of time that an internet service is inactive) or outages. Best way to safeguard yourself from it is to sign up for reliable and dedicated internet services that can get these faults fixed quickly.

Service Level Agreement

If your connection interruptions are very common and you find it difficult to work from home, consider an internet service provider that offers Service Level Agreement (SLA). It is a vendor contract which states how reliable your connection should be and agreed on remedies and penalties if the levels are not achieved.
Dedicated customer support is an absolute necessity because no matter how expensive or good your connection is, something, someday will go wrong. Look for ISPs that have reliable customer support which can get you back up and running as fast as possible.
Hence, with guaranteed internet uptime, SLA and dedicated customer support experience seamless connectivity.

If you are feeling low while working from your small confined spaces here’s a happy reminder “Big dreams happen in small places”.
HAPPY WORKING TO YOU ALL with a seamless reliable internet connection at your home.