Can Assessing Your Network Tell You If It’s Time to Switch IT Companies?
Your company’s network is vital. It is the foundation of your business as it ties up everything; from effectively communicating with customers, to facilitating sales, to keeping your computers running efficiently, and influencing your decision making. The security, reliability, and performance offered by your network determine the productivity of your employees and the general productivity of your company. All departments of your company — from product development to human resource to everything in between depends on your network to function correctly, if it malfunctions, your business operations stop.
Having a reliable IT company continually monitoring your network is essential for the smooth running of any business. Is your IT company doing enough to keep your network in check? Can a network assessment tell you if it’s time to switch IT companies? Yes.
What Is a Network Assessment? A network assessment is an in-depth analysis of your current IT infrastructure that provides you with an extensive understanding of your existing IT environment and recommends network solutions such as automation, consolidation, and simplification. It also refers to assessing network performance, a security assessment (identifying areas of risk and vulnerabilities, and security compliance), a review of network architecture, evaluation of servers, applications, operating systems, and network inventory to discover what devices are running on your network.
When Should You Perform a Network Assessment?
Wanting to undergo a network assessment often starts with realizing that your company’s IT infrastructure has grown, or individual components of your systems have started giving you trouble or failing. You might have a general idea of what is causing the problem but cannot verify it without a proper analysis of your network. Here are a few signs that it’s time to undergo a network assessment:
- Your employees are always complaining of slow or lagging performance.
- Your organization is about to change your network structure or introduce new software.
- You’re planning to expand your business.
- You’re planning to shift your IT infrastructure to the cloud.
- Your company is undergoing an audit soon.
Suppose you feel that your network isn’t functioning correctly or you have a new project that requires a well-performing system, it’s vital to undergo a network assessment. Fortunately, this assessment can give you insight into the performance of your IT partner.
Is Your IT Company Taking Care of Your Network Properly?
The results from the network assessment will bring to light critical issues that will reveal whether your IT company is taking care of your network, such as:
- Computers are running on unsupported operating systems. Meaning your operating system is no longer receiving security patches.
- Antivirus and anti-spyware software were not detected on your computers, increasing the risk for malicious attacks.
- Discovery of sources leading to interference, bottlenecks, or congestion on their network.
- Identification of flaws in the network design.
- Out of date, or malfunctioning hardware, that is weakening your security and slowing your network.
The purpose of the network assessment is to identify areas of improvement and get a more comprehensive view of your existing network’s current state. The results help you make strategic and informed business decisions.
What Will Be Covered in a Network Assessment? A network assessment covers a range of areas to determine the reliability, security, health of your network. The following assessments will be undertaken:
- Infrastructure Assessment: The operating system circuits, applications, versions, and other equipment that make up the design and implementation of your network.
- Security Assessment: This assessment uncovers all areas of risk and vulnerabilities within your database servers, applications, and files.
- Management Assessment: Issues with the network management strategy are identified and how they affect network operations. The current network strategy will determine what additional applications, processes, and events will be needed to manage the new implementations.
- Performance Assessment: This assessment identifies problems with a particular campus and WAN segments, servers, devices, and enterprise circuits. All information gathered will be combined with a thorough analysis of traffic to determine over-utilization and availability issues. The following are aspects that may cause network performance issues:
- Network Device Configuration
- Application Configuration
- Equipment and Circuit Provisioning
What Are the Benefits of a Network Assessment?
From enhanced network security to greater agility, the benefits of a high-performance computing environment are easy to visualize. The following are the benefits of undergoing a comprehensive network assessment:
- You Get to See What’s Going on With Your IT Infrastructure: The results of your network assessment gives you an in-depth analysis of your current IT infrastructure — from local traffic pattern analysis and topology maps. This can help you make informed decisions about network upgrades and maintenance.
- You Can Create a Strategic Road for Your IT Systems and People: After understanding the current state of your IT infrastructure, your employees can identify opportunities for network simplification, consolidation, cost reduction, and automation. This creates your company a clear road-map to a virtualized and modern software-defined infrastructure.
- Improves Your Network Security: It’s impossible to protect your company against cyber-attacks without full visibility of your networks., including how people, processes, and other technologies interact with it. A comprehensive network assessment identifies those interactions and security vulnerabilities. It leads to the implementation of proactive and preventative security strategies that protect against cyber-threats and enhance end-user protection.
- Helps You Uncover Cost-Saving Potential: Results from a network assessment opens doors to designing new architecture that includes cloud computing. Cloud computing eliminates the need for physical storage files, therefore, reducing costs.
For businesses looking for improved security, enhanced productivity, and greater agility, a network assessment may be vital for your company. Your network assessment results will give your company the information you need to prioritize and pitch new investments in your company.
Are You Planning To Perform A Network Assessment? If your current IT partner isn’t taking care of your network, then it’s time to switch IT companies. It’s vital to look for an IT company that has specialization in the areas you need and the expertise it takes to integrate next-generation infrastructure.
Engaging a third-party organization to lead your network assessment enhances objectivity, gives a fresh perspective, and delivers unbiased recommendations to improve performance and capacity planning.
Parkway Tech offers reliable IT solutions to businesses across North Carolina. With years of expertise and experience, we are your trusted network assessment partner.
Schedule a free consultation with us today, and let us help you create a network strategy that is aligned to your business goals.
Written by Chris Michalec posted on December 7, 2020
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