remote network monitoring

How Remote Network Monitoring Works for Managed IT Services

Remote Network Monitoring and Management Service

This article intends to provide an overview of the scope and benefits of Remote Network Monitoring and Management Service (RNMMS).  If your business does not already leverage RNMMS, or if you use these RNMMS but are not completely satisfied with it, please read on.

What is Remote Network Monitoring and Management Service and why does your business need it?  Simply put, remote monitoring service refers to 3rd party continuous observation of the operation of your computing network.  The ‘management services’ term refers to network system management support, based on results of monitoring operations, and in alignment with your Business and IT strategies.  Select IT MSPs can provide additional IT management services, which extend beyond monitoring and managing the network, and include strategic assessment and deployment of Business and IT systems.

Elements of Remote Network Monitoring and Management Service

Network Preventative Maintenance (PM):

Network PM is necessary in order to keep your network running smoothly and free of system defects. Below is a listing of some routine PM tasks that should be included in your contracted IT MSP services.

  • Security scans and repairs (Anti-Virus, Anti-Malware, etc.)
  • Software and firmware critical updates
  • Hard drive defragmentation (where appropriate)
  • Scan, clean and compact registry
  • Data archive and backup
  • Full system backup
  • Check for motherboard BIOS updates
  • Perform system performance scans
  • Check power protection devices

Periodic Reports and Review of System Health:

Periodic reports summarizing PM checks, response to network problems, and recommendations for improvements will ensure you remain aware of the health of your IT systems, allowing you to take a pro-active approach to managing this aspect of your business.

Pro-Active Repair of Looming Problems:

If your staff experiences frequent IT issues that affect their productivity, and which require frequent fixes, then your monitoring and management services may not be adequate for your business needs. A well-managed network should enjoy a low rate of system downtime, and should have full functionality of all components of the network at all times.  While this is a lofty goal, that may not be 100% attainable, performance can approach this objective.  A high quality IT MSP will identify minor issues and effect relevant repairs and maintenance before the issues become a major problem.  Your staff should enjoy seamless operation of your network without interruption.

Rapid Response to Network Problems:

One of the more obvious elements of network management is the MSP’s response to system failures or performance issues as reported by users.  A common performance metric for this service is ‘time to resolve problem’.  What may be a less common metric, but perhaps more indicative of quality service, is ‘frequency of recurrence’.  A characteristic of high quality IT monitoring and management service is resolving the root cause of problems, so that the problem does not recur.  Another telling performance metric is ‘frequency of pro-active problem resolution’ as discussed above.  While this measure is an indication that your system is being ‘managed’, if it is occurring too frequently, this may be a sign that it is time to make a strategic assessment of the system architecture and operating characteristics.  Even those problems occurring in the background and proactively repaired would be good to eliminate, in order to achieve optimum performance.

Strategic Development of Services:

Some elements of network monitoring service may be considered standard, and should always be included in the contracted scope of services.  However, there is no one package that works best for all businesses.  The complete scope of monitoring and management services you employ should be customized, based on your network configuration, applications you use, scope of your business, and your operational objectives.  The best monitoring and management solutions can only be identified and implemented by taking a strategic approach.   Involving your IT MSP early in your network planning and development activities, will allow a strategic approach to defining and optimizing your network monitoring and management services.

Maintain Awareness of Tech Industry Advances:

One key aspect of high quality network management is to ensure your IT systems employ technologies that will keep your company competitive with the evolving market. A competent IT MSP maintains knowledge of the evolving IT market, and can provide this service, allowing you to focus on your mainstream business objectives and workflow.

Forecast and Recommendation for System Upgrades:

A relevant Business and IT Strategy will forecast the prospect of current and future IT system upgrade, based on your business objectives, status of your IT system, and knowledge of the evolving IT market.  A quality IT strategy will ensure your IT system architecture is designed to allow for seamless upgrade with minimal disruption to your business workflow.  This aspect of managed services can help you more effectively forecast and manage your IT budget, and streamline upgrade activity when needed.

Benefits Summary of a High Quality Remote Network Monitoring and Management Service

  • Improved focus on business objectives: By using a 3rd party to monitor and manage your network, your company’s employees can stay focused on their primary roles, which support production and profits, and spend significantly less time trying to resolve computing system errors or using ‘work- arounds’ at reduced efficiency.
  • Maintaining awareness of network system health with minimal effort: When a 3rd party continuously monitors key network system metrics, and periodically submits reports, your management team remains aware of your network system health.  This will promote ease of ongoing strategic planning.
  • Reduction of system downtime: Routine PM (preventative maintenance) reduces system downtime, resulting in increased production efficiency and profits.
  • Reduction of overhead: Using a 3rd party to monitor and manage your network reduces the number of direct hire employees, and the associated administrative costs.
  • Maintaining access to industry best practice: Using a quality IT MSP to monitor and manage your network brings diversity of industry knowledge to your operation. This provides opportunity to help you remain competitive within your industry.
  • Streamlined Business Workflow: Enlisting the services of a high quality IT MSP to help you formulate Business and IT strategy and IT systems deployment, will result more efficient business workflow.
  • Customer Satisfaction: Your customer base will realize better customer service, as your primary business workflow becomes more efficient.  Relegating network monitoring and IT system management to a competent IT MSP can help you achieve this objective.

Remote network monitoring services are available through most IT MSPs.   Some MSPs also offer remote monitoring and management services.  If you are not completely satisfied with the level of support you are getting from your IT MSP, you may benefit from consultation with Custom Information Services (CIS).  CIS maintains an excellent track record of providing strategic network monitoring and management services.

CIS has two locations in Arlington and Addison, and serves all of the Dallas and Fort Worth area. Contact Us today to learn more about how our solutions can work best for your business, or for help getting an ROI on technology.
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