Broadband has become the "fourth utility" for small companies in the UK.
This is according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which is due to host a conference on how firms in Cumbria can improve their connectivity later this month.
The Off Grid broadband summit has been organised by the Carlisle and Penrith branch of the FSB and will take place on August 20th.
Jonathan Davies, FSB Carlisle and Penrith branch manager, stated: "Fast reliable broadband provision is a commercial necessity for businesses across Cumbria."
He said the quality of internet access currently varies widely across the region and in some rural areas it is poor to non-existent.
Last month, the FSB hit out at the state of the UK's broadband and claimed it is not "fit for purpose".
A survey by the organisation found 94 per cent of small businesses see a good connection as vital for success, but huge numbers are stuck with services no faster than two Mbps.