Waiting until downtime occurs is not the time to start thinking about how to troubleshoot the issue. It’s much better to have an idea of what to do when this issue comes up.
One of the things you should consider is to appoint an “expert” for each of your key technology support areas, , , things like e-mail, telecom or WAN, each of your mission critical business applications, intranet and internet access, etc.
A key responsibility of each Expert is to define the potential downtime issues that can happen for his technology area of responsibility. For e-mail, it would include things like virus attack, server failure, power outage, etc.
Once the potential downtime issues are identified, the next step is to develop escalation procedures to troubleshoot and resolve each of the issues when and if they occur.
Proactively looking at these issues and developing a downtime plan to attack the problem when it occurs puts you in a much stronger support position, , , and helps you sleep better at night.