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It’s around this time of the year that we tend to reflect on new opportunities and challenges that lie ahead. If you’re an IT Manager or a Network Engineer who is thinking about you and your network’s performance this last year, you’re probably contemplating whether your network operations need some fine tuning for 2015. WAN and ISP operators will ask themselves if their network management software has, and will be capable of providing the operation, administration, maintenance, provisioning and troubleshooting (OAMPT) requirements demanded from network operations centres that manage the most complex networking environments out there.
When the network fails, business halts. It’s just that simple. Network professionals work in environments with little or no tolerance for downtime and a consistent demand for high performance. And let’s face it, your Secret Santa gift won’t include a magic wand that’ll make all those SLA demands magically disappear. It’s more likely that you will look to your network management software to give you the tools you need to boost performance and maximise uptime. Here are 3 things your NMS solution should help you do.
1. Uptime in complex environments can be tedious.
The dependence on ICT services is often underestimated by the rest of the organisation. It’s only when services are unavailable that the dependence is realised. To deliver suitable service levels to support the complex networking systems found today, granular control over your environment plays a key role in optimising performance. The distributed nature of today’s networks makes maintaining that control increasingly complicated. Add to this the sometimes complex configurations of virtualised and cloud environments, and the picture becomes quite difficult to bring into focus. Network management software should give you that clarity on how your network is performing, what the causes of underperformance are and how you can address issues within the shortest time possible.
2. Networks grow all the time.
Network management systems that can monitor and track activity on the most complex systems give IT professionals the tools to provision services to the business efficiently. Sprawling networks that span large areas and involve countless interconnections not only need effective day-to-day management, but demand proper capacity planning and a comprehensive roadmap for the future. Historic and live data collected by network management software provide much of the foundation on which you build your future plans for your environment.
3. The importance of foresight.
NOCs need both high level and detailed views of networks that give clear insight into the development of network trends, security vulnerabilities, performance bottlenecks and improvement opportunities. Visibility means you gain foresight, and this puts you in a strong position to not only address faults, but constantly improve on key performance areas and evolve your service offering to the organisation. The best IT divisions out there don’t wait for top management to request new solutions to evolving business needs. Instead, it identifies opportunities to present a better business tool to the organisation or customer.
Will your network management software be relevant in 3 years?
Think about how different your network is today than it was 3 years ago. Successful IT professionals understand that their ability to manage the stable growth of environments in unison with business needs is vital to the organisation’s long term success. Network management software plays an important part in bringing the various pieces of the puzzle together and centralise monitoring, management, troubleshooting and reporting functions. With each environment having its unique configuration, network management software needs to monitor vastly complex systems that involve very unique configurations.
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