image-football-worldA high performing football team typically has a lot of talent, but they also have the best equipment to facilitate their achievements. In the same way, talented folks in organizations perform at their highest when provided with the right equipment and tools. One of those mandatory business tools is Internet access. But how do you decide which Internet Service Provider (ISP) you want to give your team?

Winning football teams put points on the board because they have professional players ready for the spotlight with a lot of speed, and they have backup players ready to take over when someone goes down. 


When it comes to the Internet, usage is increasing daily, try to avoid junior varsity level Internet access like DSL which will only hinder your employees. Staying with DSL is like giving your team 10-year-old equipment when the other team is all up to date! Give your team access to at least cable service (such as Cablevision or Comcast) or fiber service (such as FIOS) which can offer up to 150 Mbps down and 35 Mbps up.

With the growing use of online backup, you’ll need faster Internet service to ensure your offsite backups will complete off-hours. If you’re moving more of your business computer services to the Cloud, adequate Internet speeds will be required for acceptable performance. In general, internet speeds of 20 Mbps or higher are adequate for most cloud-based applications but be sure to check it out before moving to the cloud.

How do you know if you’re getting what you ordered? You can test your Internet bandwidth at — keep in mind, test results can vary widely. The best approach for testing your Internet bandwidth is to test when no one else, including online backup software, is using your Internet connection and the computer is wired to your network. Internal network switches, firewalls, and wireless connections will all impact the results achieved.

Some organizations need a guarantee of higher quality Internet service than cable or FIOS can provide. In these cases, an enterprise-class fiber optic (e.g. Lightpath) or bonded T1 solution may be in order. With these types of service, the provider has higher service level standards (SLAs) that they must adhere to in terms of uptime and performance.


Sometimes football teams have to call in a backup when one of their starting players goes down. Organizations today rely so much on their access to the Internet that the most professional are making a sound investment in a backup Internet connection. This connection should be from an alternative service provider than your primary (such as an inexpensive cable connection or DSL) and can seamlessly keep your organization working when or if the first-team ISP’s service goes down. In this case, the special features of your network firewall can make this failover to the special team seamless. 

When it comes to Internet access and your network there are other things to consider as well—not all ISPs or options are created equal; you might think they are the same, but in the field of play they are quite different. So, when selecting your Internet services, keep the tips above in mind and if you’re still confused or unsure, ask us! We’re here to help you ensure you have the best Internet service for your business so that you’re ready for your next play.

First published in our January 2014 IT Radix Resource newsletter