Keep an Eye on Your Business
For a small or medium sized business owner, taking a holiday or travelling to a conference can be a stressful experience. Who will keep an eye on your business? Will your employees know what to do if something goes wrong? It can be hard to resist the urge to call the office every couple of hours to check in, and the nagging feeling that if something breaks, you’ll be the last to know, can turn a few days away into a seemingly never-ending nightmare.
It doesn’t have to be that way. The list of things that you can monitor remotely using SMS alerts, phone apps, or a web-based monitoring system is almost limitless. You can now let technology look after things for you, and relax safe in the knowledge that no news is good news.
Alerts and Updates Pushed to Your Phone
There are lots of phone apps that can be used to give you alerts and updates about the crucial systems that you choose to monitor remotely. As long as you’re somewhere with a data signal, you will get up-to-the minute alerts about all of those devices.
If a server slows down, a security alarm is triggered, or one of your refrigeration units starts to defrost, you will know about it just as quickly as the people that are physically present at the office.
With many remote monitoring apps, you can program the monitoring device so that different alerts are sent to different people. You can use this feature to set up levels of alerts – perhaps Yellow for information, Amber for warning, and Red for urgent. You probably don’t want to get informational or warning alerts while you’re on holiday, but an urgent message is likely to be a sign that something has gone wrong and your advice might be appreciated at the office.
Security alarms, and safety alerts such as hazardous material detection or fire alarms, could be configured to send messages to all senior managers as well as to the relevant emergency services.
In addition to monitoring things, some phone apps will also let you control basic systems remotely. You can use your phone to connect to web facing devices and issue basic controls or even open up an SSH session and perform more complex actions.
It’s also possible to control some devices via SMS. If one of your industrial printers appears to have locked up, you could power-cycle it remotely to see if that fixes the issue, before wasting an engineer’s time having them travel to the office to look at it.
While it’s mostly only modern devices that you can monitor remotely, you can add thermometers and sensors to older devices, and you can hook up an inexpensive SMS relay to any device that plugs in to the mains. This makes them an incredibly valuable piece of equipment.
The possibilities for remote monitoring and control are endless, and the peace of mind, flexibility and security that they offer should not be under-estimated.
This is a guest post written by Amy Fowler on behalf of Xibis, specialists in mobile applications development and remote monitoring solutions. To find out more about mobile applications, click here. For remote monitoring, click here.