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Important information about network and internet performance | General IT guidance | Birmingham City Council

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Important information about network and internet performance

Millions of people are now working from home, including the majority of council staff.

This has resulted in a significant rise in internet use, with the number of council staff connecting to the network remotely via Netmotion increasing from an average of 1500 users, to a peak of 6000 users.

What you need to know

IT&D Services (IT&D) are continually monitoring the performance of the council network, which remains resilient with no significant issues.

However, internet speeds can be affected if other household members are using the same home broadband, such as streaming films or playing computer games.

As well as increased usage within your own home, usage from other households in your community that use the same internet service provider can also affect internet performance.

Stay connected

It is important to note that using Netmotion to connect to the BCC network via your home broadband - either via WiFi or a wired connection into your home router - will not provide the same level of application performance you experience when working from a council office.

IT&D will continue to ensure the council’s network operates as efficiently as possible within its area of control and will provide ongoing technical support to keep staff connected.

However, there are things you can do to improve your internet speed and stay connected:

  • If you're holding video calls or meetings when using Teams, turning the video conferencing feature off and using audio will require much less of your internet connection and improve the quality and performance of your Team call or meeting.
  • Try starting Teams calls at less-common times, rather than on the hour or half hour
  • Position your internet router as far as possible from other devices that may interfere with the signal, such as on a table or shelf rather than the floor.
  • For the best broadband speeds, use an ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router rather than using wi-fi.
  • Keep your router permanently switched on.
  • Where possible, try not to use a telephone extension lead, as these can cause interference which could lower your speed.
  • You must open applications in the right sequence when working remotely –
    • log onto your laptop
    • log onto Netmotion to connect to the council network
    • log onto your network drives
    • log onto your applications
  • You must shut down your laptop every night and log back on each morning, as some applications may lose their network connection - a restart therefore ensures a fresh connection.
  • Devices that can interfere with router signals include: cordless phones, baby monitors, halogen lamps, dimmer switches, stereos and computer speakers, TVs, monitors and even microwaves.