IT downtime costs $10.8 million on average, study shows
One of the biggest challenges facing IT project managers is minimising downtime.
A new study conducted by Compuware has found the average short-term financial impact of a single technological failure is $10.8 million.
This is a result of lost productivity, missed sales opportunities and an inability to meet service level agreements. The most costly consequence of a technology fault was a product recall, but this only affected six per cent of those polled.
There can also be long-term impacts, with 45 per cent of respondents suggesting they had lost market share because of an IT issue.
Although senior IT professionals are aware of the consequences of downtime, the research revealed that many are helpless to prevent future outages.
Around three-quarters of the executives that took part in the survey said the number of system failures at their company was either remaining steady or rising.
In many cases, this was attributed to a lack of investment in adequate troubleshooting measures, while 90 per cent of the IT specialists were adamant that additional funding was needed in order to rectify the situation.
Firms that have attempted to prevent any further downtime adopted a number of methods, including hiring an external technology consultant, increasing IT staffing levels and purchasing updated hardware and software.
There have been numerous high-profile examples of technology performance problems harming the reputation of corporations, with the most recent case involving Google.
The search engine giant was forced to apologise in September 2013 after its popular Gmail service encountered difficulties for around nine hours.
Google leaders said 29.1 per cent of all emails were delayed for varying periods of time. While some people reported that messages took almost an hour to filter through, the company confirmed the average holdup was just 2.6 seconds.
This shows that even the largest and most respected organisations are not immune to technical problems and it demonstrates why companies need an experienced IT project manager who remains calm under pressure.