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Top 5 Network Monitoring Tips for SMBs
SMBs, yes you. Whether you’re the owner, stakeholder or an employee you’ll all be familiar with the pitfalls businesses find themselves in regarding network reliability. For SMBs, monitoring network outages and downtime is a perpetual struggle of minimising and managing the impact it causes. Headaches are aplenty but it doesn’t have to be that bad, here are 5 tips to help ease the load.
1) Replace your old equipment before customers replace you
Aging, decaying and downright broken IT equipment can cause unexpected outages and downtime across the board. You might baulk at the cost of replacements but you’d be foolhardy to do so. This is money invested back into the business and your customers won’t show their displeasure by marching into the arms of a competitor.
2) Monitoring your key assets – underpin it all
Monitoring software can underpin the success of your business. Period. Managed Services Providers (MSPs) for example, can set up a series of alerts for their clients, particularly those with stringent SLAs to ensure that they are met. If you’re having problems navigating those inexplicably high SLAs take a look at our new ebook.
Concurrently, Ecommerce businesses can monitor the health and functionality of their checkout and product pages ensuring they’re working as expected. While achieving extreme granularity of monitoring for SMBs is unfeasible prioritizing the most important areas with the biggest pain points goes a long way in ensuring greater stability.
3) Are you prepared for Armageddon (disaster)?
Even the best laid plans can fall by the wayside and some eventualities you can’t plan for. That said, when things do go haywire, do you and your staff know what to do? Do you have back-ups in place to ensure you don’t fault on SLAs? Can you react quickly to ensure profit is not lost? As a smaller business you may be relying on external and manual back up processes such as flash drives.
Ensuring you have a secure and reliable back up system in place can save a lot of pain. Automated systems are often a godsend but if too costly forthright planning and meticulous detail don’t do any harm either.
4) Consider the value of support & training
Without wanting to burst your bubble your network is going to let you down at one point or another. SMBs typically employ staff capable of fulfilling more than one role, which is great, until resources become stretched and something goes wrong. When a network failure occurs SMBs need everything back working as quickly as possible. Investment in staff training and/or support for your systems helps immeasurably in the recovery and prevention of failures. Underestimate the value of having the proper knowledge in-house or at the dial of a phone at your peril.
5) Don’t be afraid to speak up – reassure your customers you are on the case
The number 1 quality or behavior which people demand of a brand is honesty about their products and services. Sure, shout about how great you are but don’t skip the other stuff. People get frustrated when there is a deprecation to a service with no forthcoming information. Trust me, I commuted by rail for years and was constantly dogged by impromptu delays and changes without a single announcement or communication. Keeping quiet is only going to annoy your customers. If you’re up-front about what is going on they in turn will be more inclined to help you by having a little patience.
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Being a SMB has many advantages but it can also leave you vulnerable, especially in highly volatile markets (I’m looking at you service providers). One slip up, malfunction or bug can quickly result in a loss of reputation that is often hard to restore (infuriatingly so since you worked so hard to achieve it). Don’t undo your good work, stay in-charge and win the battle of network stability.
Wondering what to expect about 100% uptime? Try our eBook to discover the hidden truths behind the 100% myth.