Naturally, businesses put a lot of time, energy, and resources into growing their sales figures and bottom line. All of that is great, but if business owners don’t also plan for how success is going to add new pressures and challenges to their IT infrastructure, then a lot of time will be wasted reacting to growth-related network issues. Scenarios like this can be easily avoided by planning your network to grow alongside your company.
Here are four IT challenges that a growing business will need to be mindful of.
So you’ve doubled your workforce in the past year? That’s great; let’s just hope that your network can accommodate all of this extra traffic and that your security solution can protect your data from adding twice as many access points. If you didn’t plan for these additional users, network traffic will slow to a crawl and your IT infrastructure will be overwhelmed.
Even if you’re not experiencing growth with your staff, workers in your office may be growing the number of personal devices they bring to the office. For example, if you haven’t reevaluated your network since before the first iPhone was released, then it may not be able to handle the strain of every worker connecting their mobile device to it. Another possibility you’ll want to be prepared for is users connecting multiple devices to your network; like the employee who feels it necessary to use their smartphone, tablet, and laptop — all at the same time! The best way to prepare for this influx of devices is to have a BYOD policy enacted that accommodates mobile device trends. Midnight Blue can help you with this.
Currently, the most significant trend facing the technology industry is what’s known as “The Internet of Things.” This is where a variety of “things,” like data-collecting devices used for analytics purposes are connected to a company’s networks. NetworkComputing explains the challenge of IoT:
Internet access for everything we touch is an imminent reality. Sooner or later, nontraditional network devices will be more common than traditional devices that plug into the network — think lighting and security controls, scanners and sensors, even your office coffee pot. These “things” will soon infiltrate the network, hogging bandwidth and using network protocols, which means you need to prepare now for the network takeover of the “things.”
What can your business do to prepare its network for this influx? First off, you need to make sure that your network has enough bandwidth to handle the increased traffic. Secondly, you need to implement a security solution designed for the new challenges presented by the IoT. For example, traditional IT security focuses on the activity of humans, but now your network will have to deal with security challenges imposed by having many times more machines than humans accessing your network, some of which could be compromised.
Therefore, you’re going to need a network monitoring solution that’s designed for IoT, like what Midnight Blue offers. NetworkComputing explains:
If you’re not already, you should be monitoring the network, applications and quality of service, and now is the time to get real control over IP address management as we look towards IPv6 migration, which will be even further hurried by the onslaught of Internet-connected devices.
Of course, the most pleasant growth is the kind that makes you money. Having more customers access your website or call your company via your VoIP system to place orders and sit through sales demos will add more traffic and stress to your network. If your network is set up to handle the needs of a small business, and you’ve grown to become a medium-sized business, then you’re going to miss out on some sales opportunities.
The team at Midnight Blue is here to help your organization handle every growth scenario that will challenge your network’s integrity. We do this by designing an IT roadmap that’s customized for the unique challenges of your business. This roadmap takes into account the latest IT trends, and it accommodates your IT needs for the next one-to-five years. Being prepared for the technological challenges of the future will make things easier on the budget, and give your business plenty of bandwidth to handle the technology that you rely on.
Call us today at (412) 342-3800 to schedule an appointment to create your very own IT roadmap!