12 December, 2023

Is your IT prepared for the Christmas break?

Preparing your IT infrastructure for a Christmas shutdown involves several key steps to ensure a smooth transition and minimal disruptions when operations resume. Here’s a checklist to help you get started:

Communicate the Shutdown:
Notify all employees about the Christmas shutdown well in advance.
Clearly communicate the start and end dates of the shutdown period.

Backup Critical Data:
Ensure that all critical data is backed up securely.
Perform a final backup of important servers, databases, and user data.

Divert Your Phones:
Ensure that phones divert to a member of the team or to an answer phone service.

Update and Patch Systems:
Apply any pending software updates, patches, and security updates.
Ensure that antivirus software is up to date.

Review Security Measures:
Verify that firewalls, intrusion detection/prevention systems, and other security measures are active and configured correctly.
Check for any unusual activity on your network.

Server Maintenance:
Check the health of your servers, both physically and in terms of software.
Verify that server room temperature and humidity levels are within the recommended range.

Power Management:
Shut down non-essential servers, computers, and peripherals to save energy.
Ensure that critical systems are connected to uninterruptible power supplies (UPS).

Network Infrastructure:
Review network configurations and ensure that all devices are functioning properly.
Check for any network connectivity issues.

User Account Management:
Review and update user accounts, ensuring that permissions are set correctly.
Disable access for employees who will be away during the shutdown.

Email Auto-Responses:
Set up auto-responses for email accounts, informing correspondents of the shutdown and providing alternative contacts if necessary.

Customer Communication:
If applicable, inform customers or clients about the holiday shutdown.
Provide emergency contact information in case of urgent issues.

Inventory Check:
Take stock of IT equipment and assets.
Update inventory records and track the status of equipment.

Remote Access:
Disable remote access for employees who won’t be working during the shutdown.
Ensure that security measures are in place for those who need remote access.

Emergency Response Plan:
Ensure that key personnel are aware of the emergency response plan in case of any unforeseen issues during the shutdown.

Physical Security:
Confirm that physical security measures are in place, such as access controls and surveillance systems.

Update and organise documentation related to IT procedures, configurations, and troubleshooting steps.

Conduct a test to ensure that critical systems can be brought back online smoothly after the shutdown.

Post-Shutdown Support:
Have a plan for providing support when operations resume, in case employees encounter any issues.

By carefully following these steps, you can help ensure that your IT infrastructure is well-prepared for the Christmas shutdown and that operations resume seamlessly when everyone returns to work. If you need any help, please feel free to contact one of our team members. We’re here to ensure you’re prepared for the festivities to begin!