Learn from the UK Government: When you do upgrades – first TEST

As a small business, imagine if your IT consultant did an upgrade on your network which brought your entire computer system down for hours, or even days. Customers don’t want to hear, “Sorry we can’t help you today with your order, come back next week”. If you have an online or offline business – delays can be disastrous.
If large companies and governments are having major problems with their computer systems, what about you? Do you have procedures in place to upgrade your computer systems. IF SOMETHING GOES WRONG, do you have a backup plan?
ComputerWorld writes IT system failures continued to plague the U.K. government this week, when as many as 80,000 civil servants working for the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) had to deal with what is being described in the local press as the biggest computer crash in government history.
The DWP was carrying out a “routine software upgrade” on Monday when the system crashed, leaving around 80% of the department’s 100,000 desk machines disrupted or completely shut down, a DWP spokeswoman said today. The problems lasted through most of yesterday, but the “majority of our system is up and running now,” she said.
Microsoft Corp. and Electronic Data Systems Corp. (EDS) run the DWP’s network as part of a $3.8 billion information technology contract.
Microsoft issued a short statement today saying that it worked closely with its partners to help rectify the situation and support the DWP, but declined any further comment. Representatives from EDS could not immediately be reached for comment.