The digital networked economy. It’s a phrase that has been regularly referred to in the business press over the last couple of years.

As more efficient networks of communication are created (both between and within businesses), the flow of data becomes swifter, and the demand for instant response becomes more marked. The faster these data move, the faster a business has to be to keep pace. Broadband is one of the most effective means of accelerating the transfer of data. Leaving aside the immediate benefits of quicker downloads and simultaneous web and phone use, broadband-enabled businesses have access to a wide range of other benefits and facilities. Despite this, many small businesses remain unconvinced of their need for a high-speed connection. Just as UK consumers are adopting broadband services in the home (at a rate of 5,000 a day, and with total consumer connections at just over 6million in the last quarter of 2004), so broadband is becoming an essential part of a company’s toolkit. The ability to offer goods and services 24/7, to both consumer and business audiences, is one example. The ability to share software across company networks, thus dispensing with the need to buy large numbers of licences. Tools such as webcast seminars are innovative and cost-effective ways to train staff, while video-conferencing cuts down travel costs as colleagues and clients communicate face-to-face despite being hundreds of miles apart. In addition, of course, is the vast increase in speed for file transfers, downloads and web access. What the additional speed of broadband really offers is a series of possibilities. The capability to empower your team, to fulfil your customers’ needs: to work smarter, not just harder.

BT is one of the British companies leading the charge towards a true digital networked economy. Recognising the importance of broadband as an essential business tool, they have recently introduced 2Mb broadband connections as standard for their customers – a 4-fold increase on their previous standard connection.

Further benefits, such as free modem and installation, are available to customers who sign up online. Click here to find out more

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