How can I navigate challenges with network management?
If you’re an IT person, chances are you prefer the predictable. You’re probably not the head-in-the-clouds type who likes to “wing it”. But over the years, many aspects of an IT expert’s work, like network management, have become more challenging. Networks are far larger than they ever were. So, it’s become harder to provide seamless and safe network availability, especially for large companies and similar sizeable enterprises.
Covid 19 threw in a few monkey wrenches as well. It made network management even more difficult due to countless employees working from home or elsewhere outside of the office. The heavy cloud network usage caused by all of this remote work increased the burden on IT teams, and that really hasn’t changed a lot over the past 2 years, even though some employees are making their way back to the office.
But there are solutions. Enter proactive network management. That’s a new phrase you’ll see a lot if you are in IT. It simply means being on the lookout for unexpected problems and being ready to act before disaster strikes.
Being proactive with network management is more essential than ever. Being reactive is no longer enough. Heading off issues before they become a worst-case scenario is key. Here’s why.
Proactive network management prevents issues from arising
When you’re trying to manage a large network, including things like customer passwords and documentation, anticipating a problem is better than waiting until one happens. As such, IT professionals are developing tool sets that let them track the potential problems that concern them the most. Tools like port scanners, address trackers, virtual machine monitors, and network content analyzers may help with such tasks.
Furthermore, an IT team should establish a baseline for what is normal within a business. This can help detect problems beforehand or as they emerge. For example, if the back-up kicks in every morning at 5 am, it’s logical to see CPU spikes. However, if those spikes are appearing several times a day, this might be a concern. With knowledge of baseline data, you’ll know what to expect and when it’s likely that something is going awry.
Being proactive means your networks operate as you intended
Chances are the network you work with support all sorts of numerous services and apps. That can present a challenge in managing both customer and internal business operations.
Maybe you’re trying to support video conferencing or perhaps running an app that makes appointments or gives quotes for services. The last thing you want is service stoppages or bottlenecks.
Proactive network management can help you avoid those. If you know your apps and services inside and out, you can be sure they are always operating as they should. And if they’re not, your troubleshooting will be swift, preventing downtimes that can greatly impact their business…and yours.
Networks become easier to manage
Whether you’re a solo managed service provider or head of a large IT team at a big company, you know it can be difficult to manage multi-vendor networks.
However, with advanced proactive network management software in place, each vendor network, WiFi, router, or switching LAN domain is easy to see and is configurable in the same place. This will save your IT team lots of time and is so much more cost-efficient as well.
With a proactive network management plan in place, you’ll find that your IT team spends less time trying to put out fires. That means no overtime or long hours trying to fix problems that have you or your customers up in arms. Preventing network issues before they happen or right at their onset means fewer hours wasted and more money saved.
You’ll gain cred points with your customers
Most of all, when you’re one step ahead of the game, your customers are happy. By managing customer networks efficiently and securely, your customers avoid frustrating, nail-biting episodes associated with downtime and other IT problems. As a result, you’ll retain their business. And, hopefully, you’ll add more business to the pot thanks to good reviews and positive word-of-mouth recommendations from your satisfied clients.
Trust the professionals with network management
At Stillwater IT we off Simply IT Managed Services, through which we can help you learn more about proactive network management and teach you how to detect problems before they become large-scale disasters. To learn more about this and other IT services we offer, consult with one of our experts by calling us at 604-899-1105 or by completing the contact form on our website.