How much does downtime cost?

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Unscheduled downtime happens all the time. In 2012 alone dozens of big-name websites went down for hours at a time, from GoDaddy.com to, well, almost anything running on Amazon. Every time an outage occurs, the Internet has a field day speculating about everything from the cause of the outage to who got fired for it. Some more transparent companies will publish a post-mortem on their blog with the details, which is nice, but there’s one question that’s almost never answered: how much did the downtime cost?

Various analysts & institutions have taken a stab at trying to answer this question with exhaustive research and surveys. The results are not very conclusive – it seems that the answer depends on the industry, the size of the company, the type of application, and even the year. We took a shot at breaking it all down for you in the infographic below: How much does downtime really cost  you?

Downtime cost infographic

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Summary: How much does downtime cost?

Downtime is really expensive – especially if you work at a financial services institution that relies on transaction-based fees like credit card transaction fees or trading fees. But there are costs associated with downtime that we don’t imagine – for example, the human cost of having to spend every day firefighting instead of focusing on other projects, or the damage to your company’s brand, which can impact customer loyalty. It may be worth the effort to find out what downtime costs your organization, and how much of it you can afford.

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  • Steven C Tiell

    So…the actual study (http://j.mp/HZOIqJ) shows the average cost of downtime at $205,550 per hour (or $3425.83 per minute). Not $5,600. How do you arrive at $5,600?

    • Emily

      Thanks for catching that, Steven. The study I was using was published in 2010, and it looks like it’s now outdated – the report you sent must have been published soon after we posted this. Looks like I’d better go back and update this with the new data!

      • Steven C Tiell

        Cool. Thanks! Do you have links to the other research reports you used as well? Particularly the Standish Group and Dataquest ones?

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