Working from home - is residential broadband up to the job?

Can you use your residential internet line to connect your business? You can, yes. Should you? Not if you need the same kind of connection you enjoy in the office, That was the case in the ‘old normal’ - and it’s become even more important in the new.

According to Forbes, a greater number of employees – around 17 million – will be expected to work from home multiple days a week.

An Englishman’s home was once his castle. Now it’s his office. And his partner’s office. And his son’s university campus. Not to mention his daughter’s Minecraft HQ.

As our lives move increasingly online, the internet is noisier than ever: we’ve already seen a 30% daytime uplift in internet traffic and a 10% rise in demand for voice as more and more people connect from home. There’s more competition for bandwidth, and more chance of a residential connection suffering under the strain.

And business security is another concern. Your office business line comes with the option to include a number of security features that your residential line doesn’t. With an increase in COVID-19 scams doing the rounds, you’ll want all the security you can get. A business-grade internet connection is arguably more important now than it was when we were working at the office.

Now homeworking has become our new reality for the foreseeable future, your business deserves better.


Bandwidth battles, banished

One of the main benefits of a line that’s utilised just for business - especially now your residential connection’s seeing so much action - is that you’ll have your own bandwidth. With upper-end business connections such as leased lines, business traffic is also prioritised. That means your  business essential applications such as VoIP, video conferencing and email are recognised and take precedence.


The safety net of suitable security

In news that will surprise absolutely no one, scammers, phishers and fraudsters of all kinds are already looking to make a profit out of the upheaval in the way we work now.  So don’t leave your business vulnerable. The amount of data we now share and handle online is vast, and will remain so; protecting it is vital.

Our business line comes with Worksafe security ‘as standard’ - it’s network-level security that identifies malicious sites and software, so you’ve got added protection. Our packages are fully customisable, so you can choose to add further advanced security features as needed.

Business internet packages typically come with one or more static IPs - our Homeworker Fibre packages include one as a freebie. But why bother? Well, a static IP is an important feature for business connectivity because it’s easier for Domain Name Servers (DNS) to manage.

A DNS is basically an address book for the internet. Every time someone types in your web address (using letters), a DNS service translates it to a corresponding series of numbers (your IP address). Usually, your computer is assigned a new IP address every time you log on. So having a static IP address makes you easier to find.

For businesses relying on VPNs, static IPs can add a further level of insight and control. By assigning dedicated IP addresses to individual devices, you can see who your network’s serving and better identify any rogue login attempts. You can also use static IPs to manage fixed assets like CCTV and alarm systems. Plus, they’re vital if you want to access your computer remotely, or run a website or server.

You can rely on service levels actually built for business

Business continuity is a biggie. If you can’t afford for your internet to go down, even for an hour or two, working using residential lines, which come with no guarantees, could be a disaster waiting to happen. Our business lines come with guaranteed fix times, business-specific SLAs, and 24 / 7 UK support services, rated ‘excellent’ on Trustpilot.

This is especially important for businesses that rely on large amounts of data, like law firms, media agencies, and those that are diversifying by connecting to clients online, like gyms offering online PT sessions. An unreliable or laggy residential line - with no quick fixes on down-time - could cause real issues.


Reassuringly expensive. Except it’s not

While you can keep expanding and improving your business internet package, our ‘standard business fibre line offers the best combination of price and service.

So, to answer the original question: is residential broadband up to the job? Not really. When it comes to working from home - using data, taking payment, communicating online - you need a connection that's built for business, not one that’s struggling to support you and everyone else in your home. Minecraft and all!

We hope this blog offers you some real insight into why business-grade internet is so critical to running your business from home safely and successfully.

TalkTalk Business quickly recognised the realities of the new normal and developed a suite of homeworking packages delivering business-grade connectivity to homes across the country. Our homeworker packages are designed to support 100 lines and more, but we’re always happy to advise on homeworking connectivity for businesses with smaller teams.

You can learn more about our Homeworker Fibre packages here. And if you’re not quite sure what you need, get in touch on 03301 624 658 to tell us a bit about your business. We’ll recommend the solution that best suits your business, no hassle, no pressure.