Getting a regular network assessment for performance and security is rarely at the top of a business owner’s mind. With a million other things that are typically more pressing and time-sensitive bombarding company employees from the CEO to the I.T. administrator, it’s not uncommon to see regular network assessments go by the wayside. As a result, it is quite easy to set aside important network maintenance issues in preference for focusing on more pressing or urgent tasks.
However, as business has evolved and other factors have led to more and more remote-working habits, the relationship with the internet and business networks has rapidly and greatly evolved in a relatively short period of time. As a result of this evolution, it is more important than ever to audit and regularly assess your network for a myriad of reasons. Since it would take a great deal of time to discuss each potential error or challenge that can arise from a vulnerable or inefficient network, we will focus on the most important three.
Network security may seem like an obvious talking point but there is more complexity to this issue than people realize. First of all, security is not just as simple as having firewalls and spam filters. Proper security measures also include other elements such as login protocols, cloud access, maintaining current and updated hardware and software, remote access, and more.
Since the last year has drastically changed how people access work information and interact with business documents online, it is quite common to see network security that worked great one or two years ago have unpredicted vulnerabilities due to an adjustment in regular working habits.
Performing quarterly or yearly network assessments is a simple and easy way to get a top-down view of your network and how you and your team interact and operate on it. Despite working habits continuing to change, you can keep your security and network performance in line with this evolution.
Similarly with network security, business and employee efficiency can be directly linked to your network performance. The most obvious example is when an employee can’t access work documents remotely due to dated or poorly designed network access protocols. Having your team consistently be able to access work documents quickly and efficiently is more important than ever with a growing remote workforce.
This breaks down into two parts. Hardware and software.
Having current and reliable technology may be an obvious suggestion, but technology is evolving faster than ever so people need to understand that hardware more than a few years old could present potential challenges with regard to network access and performance.
Software performance and integration is the second part of the equation. Even if you have the best tech money can buy, it needs to properly integrate and function with your vital business software. With more employees moving from the office to remote work, it is common to see a loss in average efficiency due to slow performance or regular network access problems.
By doing regular network assessments, you can easily identify what hardware and software is potentially slowing you down and make adjustments accordingly.
3. Overhead Cost
Last but not least, regular network assessments offer valuable feedback that allow businesses to streamline their internal functionality and minimize fiscal waste. Knowing what hardware and software is working is only part of the conversation. The second thing to consider is whether or not there is an opportunity to simplify or remove potential hardware, software, or processes that result in wasted time, resources, or both.
Analyzing network assessment data is very much a process where you get back what you put in. If your I.T. team or manager is not regularly looking through reports to find areas of loss or inefficiency, then it is very possible and likely that you could be spending extra dollars for literally no reason.
Taking a moment to audit a network is not a terribly time consuming process and if done regularly can really help a business in several manners including employee performance, business expenses, and network security.