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Any business in the modern era needs to be connected to the internet. Not only does the internet allow organisations to reach larger audiences, but it’s a critical resource for marketing, customer support, and collaboration. Through the internet, your business is able to access cloud services and other online tools that allow you to do better business. The internet allows you to access the talents of skilled people from around the world, and allows your teams to work remotely from anywhere, making your business far more efficient and productive than ever.

Making the most of your business on the internet means that you need to find the right internet solution for your business – a business-focused plan that provides the right amount of data, speeds, and other features such as VoIP communication becomes the very foundation of your business.

Luckily for Australian businesses, there is a national infrastructure in the nbn™, through which you can access competitive business plans no matter where your organisation is located in Australia.

1

What is nbn™ for business?

The nbn™ for business is a completely different product than the home broadband solutions provided by the nbn™ to Australian households, and within the banner of business there are differences between nbn™ services for small businesses vs enterprise organisations.

  • nbn™ small business
  • nbn™ enterprise

nbn™ small business

Table of contents

What is nbn™ for small business?

Find out more

How will small business nbn™ help my organisation?

Find out more

Does your small business have to switch to the nbn™?

Find out more

What should you look for in a small business nbn™ plan?

Find out more

What should you look for in a business nbn™ provider?

Find out more

Next steps for connecting your business to the nbn™

Find out more

Revolutionising the way your business works with business nbn™

Find out more

Nbn™ small business services are generally accessed in the same way as a residential plan – you simply find an ISP that offers a plan that meets your needs, and then sign up with them. Once your business connection has been finalised, you’ll have nbn™ broadband fed through to the business.

There are two main types of nbn™ service, and the type that you’ll have delivered depends on where your business is located:

  • Fixed line connections utilise a physical ‘line’ (or series of wires) that run directly to your business, whether that’s Fibre-to-the-Premises (FTTP), Fibre-to-the-Node (FTTN), or one of the less common connection types.

  • Fixed wireless and satellite connections are, as the name suggests, wirelessly delivered to your business, and are used only for the most regional parts of Australia.

For the overwhelming majority of businesses, the nbn™ will be of the fixed line connection type.

That’s the technology itself, though. NBNCo provides the underpinning technology, but not the services. The services are provided by ISPs, such as Aussie Broadband, and here’s where things get competitive. ISPs are the ones that set the prices of business nbn™ plans, and what extras, if any, are bundled into the service. The range of choice here is extensive, and the right nbn™ plan for your business will largely depend on what kind of business you’re running.

If you’re just starting out as a small business or sole trader, then your internet needs will be limited – you’ll likely only need a simple business nbn™ plan that will run your website, allow you to send and receive emails, and work on the internet. With more employees, you’ll want a plan that bundles the phone services together to provide a communications platform for your business.

2

How will small business nbn™
help my organisation?

The results from a recent Xero survey of 1,000 small businesses in Australia revealed that 62% of businesses believe poor internet and phone connection affect the quality of customer service.

Small business nbn™ offers organisations a number of additional advantages. Perhaps one of the most significant ones is that it’s now possible to work from more places. Australia’s internet infrastructure prior to the nbn™ was very much loaded towards the major cities – if you needed the internet for your business, you had to be in a central location where fast connections were available. That made those central locations very expensive places to work in from a rent and commuting perspective. Now, however, it’s easier than ever to set up globally competitive businesses in regional Australia, and many organisations are making that shift, both from a work/life balance, and as a way of keeping the cost of business down by relocating to a lower cost regional centre.

When considering the benefits of the nbn™ for small businesses, here are just a few:

  • The opportunity to communicate with your customers and clients through high quality video conferencing.
  • The ability for you and your team to be mobile and work from anywhere, and the capacity to access talent from anywhere in the world.
  • To read more about how to optimise your remote workers, check out our article here.
  • The ability to offer customers a better experience through email lists and promotional features like loyalty rewards that can be tracked online (dependent of course on your CRM and internal team).
  • The potential to work more efficiently by accessing internet-based tools for everything from accounting to customer management and inventory management.
  • The networking opportunities from being part of a global community related to your profession.
  • The potential to understand your customer base better. Through data collection and analytics on the internet you can get a better feel for what your customers are interested in and their feedback

Build the best nbn™ plan that suits your business

Build my nbn™ plan
For further information:

To read more about how to optimise your remote workers, check out our article

Small business connectivity series: How to optimise your remote workers

To find out more about the benefits and why you should switch to a small business nbn™ plan, check out our article here.

Do you need a small business internet plan?

Do you need a small business internet plan for your organisation?

For Aussie Broadband small business nbn™ customers, one of the key benefits that will help you spend more time running your business is access to our MyAussie app.

Through MyAussie, small businesses can save time troubleshooting any connection issues by running tests in the app itself. Any tests will be recorded against a customer’s account so that they can be referred to if a follow up call is required to resolve a connection issue.

3

Does your small business have to switch to the nbn™?

The first thing you need to do is check whether the nbn™ has been activated in your area, or if not, when it will be. The vast majority of Australia is now connected to the nbn™, and it won’t be much longer before the remainder is given access too (access an up-to-date nbn™ rollout map here).

If the nbn™ has come to your area, then you will indeed be forced to make the shift to an nbn™ plan. This is due to the way that the nbn™ is installed. NBNCo come into an area and install a mix of new fibre technology, as well as leverage the existing copper infrastructure that already powers Australian communications. Once NBNCo has completed this, the new nbn™ connection ‘takes over’ and supersedes the previous infrastructure. Any organisation that doesn’t make the switch will be completely disconnected.

This doesn’t just apply to the internet connection, either. Those copper wires that NBNCo take over were the same wires that powered telephones, and those, too, will no longer operate. One particularly critical piece of technology that will be affected, but many might not think of, is security systems. Those, too, relied on the phone lines and will cease to be functional once the nbn™ is switched on in an area.

For further information:

Read our article on how to transition your fixed-line security system to the nbn™

How to change your security system over to the nbn™

That’s not to say there aren’t alternatives – it would be possible to install 4G wireless mobile internet solutions in the business, for example – but as far as ‘landlines’ and standard connections to the internet go, the nbn™ will be the only option in the near future.

Businesses should see this as an opportunity rather than an impediment, however. The nbn™ is an opportunity to upgrade the old phone systems to a hosted PBX and VoIP system, saving money in the long term and providing a better and more flexible communications system to the organisation. Unified Communications (UC) has become such a buzzword in business because it is proven to increase productivity, encourage deeper collaboration within the organisation, and improve interactions with customers and clients.

The speed of the nbn™ also allows organisations to adopt as many cloud services as they want – systems that can be logged into from anywhere, enabling a more flexible and mobile workforce. Cloud, too, is a saving measure, as it gives organisations access to technology and services that would previously would have been prohibitively expensive to buy outright for an affordable monthly price.

Finally, nbn™ services give organisations access to more advanced security measures, including backup and recovery, to protect businesses at a time when security is becoming a greater risk than ever to manage.

Most importantly, it’s by no means difficult to prepare your business to transition to the nbn™. It does require a bit of forethought, but once you’ve decided on your ISP and plan, you’ll be able to keep your existing internet connection until the rollover can be completed, however there should be no disruption to your business. Just in case, it is always recommended that businesses opt for a redundant link when making the switch  – this ensures that there is a seamless backup in place if there ever is any outage during the transition.

No hassle, no fuss, no more frozen video calls

Build my nbn™ plan
For further information:

You can read all about redundant links and why they’re
recommended for businesses moving to the nbn™

The importance of a redundant link during your nbn™ switchover

One thing you will want to consider once the nbn™ is active is having a redundancy plan. The more your business comes to rely on the internet, with cloud services and the like, the greater the potential disruption if an outage occurs. Gartner predicts that by the end of 2021, 65 percent of Infrastructure and Operations leaders will have underinvested in their availability and recovery needs because they used estimated cost of downtime metrics. When in fact, the cost of downtime to a business is so much more than just lost hours. It can include negative customer experiences, negative reviews,safety issues and impacted revenue.

A redundancy plan is simply an alternative internet access point that you can use as a backup if the main nbn™ connection goes down. For most organisations that will take the form of a second connection, such as a mobile 4G connection. If the nbn™ connection experiences disruption for a period of time, the organisation can roll over to that alternative to continue working.

4

What should you look
for in a small
business nbn™ plan?

There are a couple of things that you need to consider when selecting the right business nbn™ plan for your needs, and these will differ depending on what you will be using your connection for. However at a high level, there are a few considerations that would apply to all small businesses:

Price

This usually goes without saying, but finding a small business nbn™ plan that fits within your organisation’s budget is important. Bear in mind, however, that a robust nbn™ plan with business-grade support from a customer support centre will actually save you money; you’ll be able to leverage VoIP and cloud-based services rather than having to buy expensive technology up-front, and will have issues addressed by people with an understanding that connectivity is essential for most businesses.

Speed

There’s a general correlation between the price of a business nbn™ plan, and the speeds that it offers. Business nbn™ plans can range from a simple 25 Mbps download/ 5 Mbps upload for a micro-business or sole trader, through to 100/40 internet speeds for a business with a number of employees. Remember that each of your employees will need to ‘share’ the speed that you invest in, and if your speeds are too slow for the work you’re doing, the business productivity will be compromised.

One thing to consider when selecting a provider is the kinds of speeds that they offer during peak periods. Users with some ISPs notice a significant drop in speeds during peak hours. This occurs when the ISP has purchased too little bandwidth from NBNCo for the number of connections that it is maintaining, and therefore the bandwidth is being spread too thinly across users. Always look for the ‘average peak speed’ quoted by an ISP, rather than the maximum speed offered  on any business nbn™ plan. Although ‘peak hours’ might be considered outside of the majority of businesses usual operating hours, there are still a number or companies who may be impacted by speed drops during the hours of 6pm-11pm, depending on the individual business and the services they offer.

The complexity of your needs

If you’re looking to simply use the internet for basic web work and email, then you’ll need a much more modest internet connection than a business that is looking to make VoIP a core part of the business. Those organisations working with multimedia, social media, and cloud services will need more powerful internet speeds again.

For further information:

It’s easy to make the switch to a new small business nbn™ provider. Check out our article here to find out how.

How to swap broadband plans for your small business

5

What should you look for in a  business nbn™ provider?

Not every nbn™ plan is equal, and not every business nbn™ provider will give you the same quality service and support.

There are a number of key metrics that will help you decide on the right ISP provider:

Download and upload speeds

During peak hours, there will generally be a drop in performance, between what is the theoretical maximum of the plan that your business is on, and what you’ll get. This is caused by congestion on the network, but the better ISPs ensure that they purchase enough bandwidth from NBNCo that the drop in performance is minimal.

Average daily outages per user lasting longer than 30 seconds

Enterprise nbn™ customers will generally have a minimum guarantee for uptime, small business internet users will be affected by outages as consumers are. An outage of over 30 seconds is considered to be significant enough for the ACCC to track as a metric, because at that point, it starts to affect the productivity of businesses.

For small businesses there are a number of additional questions that you may want to ask of a prospective ISP:

Are there termination and connection fees?

If you’re a small business and looking to grow, then there’s every chance that you’ll need to move to a different plan as your business outgrows your existing plan. This can be a problem if you’ve been locked onto a contract with significant termination fees. You’ll also want to know what the connection fee is, because otherwise it can be a surprise set-up cost that you weren’t anticipating.

Do I need a new modem or router?

Not all modems and/or routers are compatible with the nbn™. If yours isn’t, then your ISP might provide a modem/router that’s appropriate for business use as part of the plan, or for a small additional rental cost.

If you're considering a switch from your current nbn™ provider and you intend to use the modem/router provided, it's worth confirming that you won't lose access to any critical features such as VoIP technology to make calls.

You can't afford to not have the best nbn™ connection

Build my nbn™ plan

6

Next steps

One of the strengths of the nbn™ is that it has given small businesses across Australia the power of choice. No longer does a business have to rely on one or two local providers (particularly in regional locations). Now, Australian businesses across the country have access to a wealth of ISPs, providing services to the entire country.

This choice has made the ISP space competitive, which means that by asking the right questions and finding the right provider, every small business can benefit.

For further information:

Did you know that unreliable internet could be costing your business in more than just lost money? Read more about it here

6 ways unreliable internet is costing your small business

Prepare for the shift now

Once you’ve decided on whether business nbn™ or enterprise nbn™ is the right solution for your organisation, it’s time to research the ISPs.

There are a couple of characteristics in an ISP that you should be looking for:

1

Once you’ve decided on whether business nbn™ or enterprise nbn™ is the right solution for your organisation, it’s time to research the ISPs.

2

The reviews that your peers have been giving them online. Nothing demonstrates the quality of an ISP higher than the reviews being left across Product Review, social media, Google Reviews, and other third party platforms.

3

For small business, you should be considering the reliability of the ISP – every downtime will cost your business money, so knowing how often (and for how long) the ISP experiences an outage is important.

4

Additional services – are you going to be able to bundle your telephone into your service?

7

Revolutionising the way your business works with business nbn™.

Aussie Broadband has long held a reputation for excellence with its small business nbn™ plans, so if you have any further questions for what we can do for your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Power your business with unlimited nbn™

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Want to explore our small business nbn™ plans?
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Need to find out whether the nbn™ is available for your business?
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nbn™ enterprise

Table of contents

What is nbn™ for enterprise?

Find out more

How will enterprise nbn™ help my organisation?

Find out more

What should you look for in an enterprise nbn™ plan?

Find out more

Next steps for connecting your business to the nbn™

Find out more

Revolutionising the way your business works with business nbn™ and enterprise nbn™

Find out more

If you’re running a larger organisation, you’ll likely want to invest in enterprise nbn™.

Enterprise nbn delivers highly robust and reliable business-grade internet connectivity, with access up to 99.95% uptime, fast 4-hour service restoration and 4G failover redundancy to keep your business up and running 24/7.

Other nbn plans simply don’t offer higher availability and service level guarantees like Enterprise nbn

2

How will enterprise nbn™
help my organisation?

According to a study by Sandisk, slow internet makes a business lose an average of one week of working hours per year. This is both directly and due to the resulting drop in morale, with the decrease in productivity seriously affecting revenue. Just imagine your employees all having consistent access to the internet speeds they need to conduct their work to the most efficient and high-quality manner, while enabling them to stay focused and on-task – it’s a major business win!

With an increasing number of people working remotely, making your business operations accessible to employees no matter their location is commensurately becoming more important. Australia’s internet infrastructure prior to the nbn™ was very much loaded towards the major cities – if you needed the internet for your business, you had to be in a central location where fast connections were available. That made those central locations very expensive places to work in from a rent and commuting perspective. Now, however, it’s easier than ever to set up globally competitive businesses in regional Australia, and many organisations are making that shift, both from a work/life balance, and as a way of keeping the cost of business down by relocating to a lower cost regional centre.

Outside of employee productivity and internal activity that can be improved through an enterprise nbn™ connection, there is a larger impact on your external activity as well. This could be with customers (for example businesses that provide a service or product), users (for example schools or councils), and more. The opportunities for scalability and growth with an enterprise nbn™ connection are limited only by your organisation.

3

What should you look for in an enterprise nbn™ plan?

The needs for an enterprise nbn™ plan differ greatly from that of a small business nbn™ plan in several key ways, with the majority directly relating to the type of organisation and what you will be using the internet for.

For example, a school with multiple classrooms/locations would have greatly different connection and speed needs than an eCommerce business with multiple websites and/or locations.

Things to consider for enterprises:

The level of service and support you need

It’s one thing to offer a SLA with a 99% or 99.95% uptime promise. It’s quite another to offer the kind of support that enterprises need. What kind of priority support and dedicated resources can the enterprise count on, and will the service agreement provide dedicated contact support for outside of regular working hours, weekends, and public holidays?

It is possible (depending on your ISP) to write into your service level agreement the amount of uptime your ISP will guarantee through an enterprise nbn™ plan, and it’s possible to adopt a plan that will provide priority or out-of-hours support for faults. This is important for businesses that rely on their businesses being online and cannot afford extended outages.

Aussie Broadband tailors your nbn™ enterprise plan based on a three-tiered support package approach:

Bronze
  • Best effort SAG
  • nbn™ 12 hr eSLA 24/7
  • 24/7 enterprise support
Silver
  • 99% uptime SAG
  • nbn™ 8hr eSLA 24/7
  • 24/7 enterprise support
Gold
  • 99.95% uptime SAG
  • nbn™ 4hr eSLA 4hr 24/7
  • 24/7 enterprise support
The complexity of your needs

If you’re looking to simply use the internet for basic web work and email, then you may only need a more modest internet connection than a business that requires hybrid or private cloud models, remote team capabilities, etc. However the scale and scope of connection, service and speed that you require is largely dependent on your individual business needs, which is why there is no ‘one size fits all’ for enterprise nbn™ services.

No two businesses are the same. That's why our Enterprise nbn™ service offers complete flexibility for you to customise an nbn™ solution that perfectly fits your business requirements.

Check out our customisable enterprise nbn™ plan builder here.

Visit our enterprise nbn™ plan builder
Speed and contention ratio

When considering the speed and contention ratio that is required for your business, keep in mind:

1

Each of your employees will need to ‘share’ the speed that you invest in, and if your speeds are too slow for the work you’re doing, the business productivity will be compromised.

2

It’s not just download speed to be mindful of, but also upload speed  – eg it’s all well and good to have shared files for the organisation to work on, but if you can’t upload the file in the first place due to slow speeds then you’ll find productivity being negatively impacted.

3

The contention ratio is the ratio of the potential maximum demand to the actual bandwidth. So the lower the contention ratio, the faster your possible speeds.

The data class

When considering the speed and contention ratio that is required for your business, keep in mind:

There are three different traffic classes for business nbn™ plans:

1

Wholesale Traffic Class 1 (TC1) – This is a lower bandwidth product, which has been designed principally for organisations looking for voice (VoIP) solutions. TC1 products offer symmetrical download and upload speeds, as both are equally important for voice. This product has a 1:1 contention ratio and a committed information rate (the bandwidth for a virtual circuit guaranteed by an internet service provider to work under normal conditions). The benefits of a committed information rate that provides predictable and reliable bandwidth for business-critical applications are particularly noticeable for those businesses that use voice-based internet applications, such as VoIP, and other services requiring low latency and jitter.

The speed range for TC1 is 1/1Mbps to 5/5Mbps.
2

Wholesale Traffic Class 2 (TC2) – Like with TC1 products (above), TC2 products are symmetrical between download and upload speeds, but also offer higher bandwidth, making them ideal for business applications and cloud services. TC2 also offers 1:1 contention ratio and a committed information rate.

For businesses looking for a product that offers consistent and predictable speeds, for example applications like video conferencing, or services like business networking using MPLS, TC2 can provide the required high-performance data connectivity at the network level.

The speed range for TC2 is 5/5 to 50/50Mbps.
3

Wholesale Traffic Class 4 (TC4) – Unlike TC1 and TC2, above, TC4 products don’t offer committed information rates, meaning that connections can be affected by congestion. Additionally, the download speeds are higher than the upload speeds. This class is for small businesses and those with basic phone and internet needs.

The speed range for TC4 is 25/5 to 1000/400Mbps.

Note: Anything higher than 50/50Mbps on TC2 would be better served on an nbn™ enterprise ethernet high Class of Service (CoS) for price and scalability up to 1000/1000Mbps.

Enterprise customers should also consider complementary services to an internet connection when they are upgrading their service, including web and email hosting, a hosted firewall for additional security, and a redundancy link service as a connection backup. These are all important to consider closely when setting up your enterprise nbn™ plan

Nbn™ Enterprise Ethernet

Enterprise ethernet is a Layer 2 carrier-grade fibre service that delivers bandwidth with the highest speed, performance and reliability across the nbn™ ethernet access network.

Nbn™ enterprise ethernet enables a symmetrical bandwidth profile with traffic prioritisation, including low and high CoS. Low CoS is designed to be most suitable for low priority applications (such as internet browsing and emails) through ‘best effort’ contention, while high CoS works best to ensure a committed 1:1 information rate that is needed for Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), video conferencing, and CRM database queries.

Find out more about enterprise ethernet here.

Price

While price for an enterprise organisation is important, it’s usually more important to find the right service that meets your organisation’s needs. Once you’ve determined this, it’s then time to bring pricing into it.

The Aussie Broadband enterprise nbn™ plan builder provides an instant quote based on your internet requirements, without you having to wait for a consultant to get back to you regarding an estimated price.

4

Next steps

One of the strengths of the nbn™ is that it has given businesses across Australia the power of choice. No longer does an enterprise have to rely on one or two providers who have the capabilities of offering enterprise-grade services. Now, Australian businesses across the country have access to a wealth of ISPs, providing services to the entire country.

This choice has made the enterprise ISP space competitive, which means that, by asking the right questions, and finding the right provider, an Australian organisation of any size can give itself a significant competitive boost.

Prepare for the shift now

The first step needs to be to start preparing for the shift to the nbn™ now by researching your options, both from an ISP perspective and also in relation to the considerations that were posed earlier.

Research the ISPs

Once you’ve decided on what elements of enterprise nbn™ are required (including contention ration, speed, service/support package, etc) for your organisation, it’s time to research the ISPs that can provide these offerings.

There are a couple of characteristics in an ISP that you should be looking for:

1

The reviews that your peers have been giving them online. Nothing demonstrates the quality of an ISP higher than the reviews being left across Product Review, Whirlpool, social media, Google Reviews, and other third party platforms. You can also look for case studies and testimonials from their satisfied customers on their website.

2

A customisable enterprise nbn™ plan is a sign that the ISP is committed to providing the right service for your organisation’s needs, and not just looking to move you onto the most expensive package available.

3

Additional services – does your ISP offer complementary services with an enterprise plan? Discuss with them what your options are.

5

Revolutionising the way your business works with enterprise nbn™

Aussie Broadband has long held a reputation for excellence with its enterprise nbn™ plans, so if you have any further questions for what we can do for your business, don’t hesitate to get in touch!

High-speed Enterprise nbn™ to power your business communications

Ready to sign up? You can
do it yourself!
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Want to build a plan?
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Want to check if Enterprise nbn™ is available at your site?
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