As you’re enjoying the festivities this month, spare a thought for your database administrators and IT teams. It’s one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year for them. They’re the ones running around making sure all the systems for profit and non-profit organizations are running smoothly. While you welcome the spikes in customer orders every December, your staff are working extra hours to ensure those orders are fulfilled accurately and on time. They’re also striving to answer customer queries in a timely and friendly manner. It can often leave them feeling over-worked and overwhelmed rather than festive. Ensuring all your databases are in good working order will go a long way to meeting customer demand and helping your staff have an enjoyable holiday season. Here are our three tips to help your database teams celebrate rather than burn out: 1. Prevention is better than cure That’s good advice to avoid an office party hangover, but it also applies to your database. Investing in on-going, proactive database monitoring tools will alert your teams to potential issues with your databases before the pre-holiday rush kicks in. If there are issues – double records for example – a regular database healthcheck or audit will find the cause of the problem. Normally, we can fix these remotely on the same day. So, instead of reactive fire-fighting, take time to plan, pinpoint problems and solve them before they turn into expensive customer service disasters. 2. Get extra help if you need it Sometimes a business is hit with a double whammy. Sales activity increases at the same time as staff go on leave or succumb to the inevitable outbreaks of seasonal colds and flu. That can put your customer service standards and brand reputation at risk. It also means a huge amount of stress for those team members left to do the work. They’re doing everything they can to hold it all together but sometimes they need an extra pair of hands. When recruiting additional permanent team members just isn’t practical, why not consider outsourcing to a Virtual Database Administrator (VDBA)? They can be put to work immediately to resolve a crisis situation or just ease the pressure during busy times. 3. Have a back-up plan If, despite all your planning, you have a disaster and your ecommerce site goes down on the busiest shopping day of the year, make sure you have a back-up plan in place. Always have an expert on call. Someone you can rely on 24/7 to investigate and hopefully find a solution they can implement as quickly as possible. This year, let’s make the holidays as relaxed and enjoyable as possible for your customers and your staff. With forward planning, we can prevent many database problems occuring. Of course, if you need us over the holidays, we’ll be here but it’ll be a lot less stressful for everyone if you contact us now.
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