Polar vortex brings ice, remote working to the south

If you are a business in Texas or Mississippi, there is a good chance that you  have had to shut down operations because of inclement weather. However, these instances are typically related to hurricanes or tornados and happen when it is much warmer outside.

Right now, however, freezing temperatures are hitting the south as the latest polar vortex heads in that direction and mixes with the gulf moisture to create a snow and ice storm that is rarely felt in this area. The result has been school closings, dangerous road conditions and many residents feeling they woke up in the wrong state.

"This is a very dangerous situation because snow and ice are very rare for extreme southern Mississippi," Robert Latham, executive director of the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, told Fox News. "We need everyone to have an emergency plan together for this."

For businesses, an "emergency plan" means a couple different things. First off, severe weather highlights the need for proper backup and recovery solutions. No organization wants to return from a power outage to find that servers have been wiped clean or critical information has been lost.

The second piece is creating a system that allows employees to work safely from remote locations. This could mean the use of a cloud infrastructure for remote access, unified communications to stay connected with work emails and calls and mobile integration to ensure employees are able to handle their daily tasks even though icy roads have them stuck at home.

With the help of an IT consulting firm that specializes in these organizations, any company will be able to offer this kind of support.