In today's post covid digital world, where mobile devices are king, your company's Wi-Fi network is going to play a much bigger role than it has in the past.
Whatever your business vertical, If your company's wireless network goes down, you will harm your brand, alienate customers, lose productivity and ultimately money.
FACT: Wi-Fi and connectivity is now just as important as power, running water, heating, and air conditioning for most businesses.
It’s more important than ever to keep your Wi-Fi as fast, dependable, and secure as possible.
However, for companies with a small internal IT team, this can be a challenge...
In this blog post, we’ll highlight six reasons why smaller IT teams struggle to solve Wi-Fi issues and tell you what you can do about it.
1) End-user expectations for 100 percent uptime and immediate response are rising.
Google, Facebook, YouTube, Uber, Netflix, Airbnb, Spotify, and Amazon Prime have changed the way people behave and expect things.
The new standard is instant gratification.
According to rumours, Amazon is investing nearly a billion pounds to reduce the time it takes for most Amazon Prime deliveries in the United States from two to one day.
Gone are the days when people were prepared to wait for 10 or 20 minutes at the supermarket to check out. Or wait in a 20-minute queue to buy tickets at the cinema.
What does this new culture mean for small IT teams and their end-user support?
If an employee called their company help desk ten years ago to report a problem, they would expect to wait anywhere from a few hours to a day or two for the problem to be fixed.
When a tablet, laptop, or PC won't log in these days, the conversation goes something like this:
"My tablet's Wi-Fi connection has dropped again. I can't do my job without it, you have to send someone over here in the next 10 minutes, this Is critical .”
Expectations for 99.9% uptime and instant gratification have shifted dramatically. An understaffed internal IT desk is not a great place to be if you’re looking for job satisfaction!
2) Increasing Requirements for Applications
I remember a time when some of the most popular software applications were only available on a few diskettes or CDs.
A single, relatively low-resolution photo taken on one of today's popular Android or iPhone smartphones was about the size of a popular word processing programme or spreadsheet application. At most, a few megabytes.
But now it's rare to see software or mobile OS upgrade that actually has lower system requirements than the previous generation.
Demands for memory, bandwidth, and latency — all of which end users take for granted — continue to rise with no end in sight.
When it comes to addressing their Wi-Fi issues, small IT teams must contend with ever-increasing SAAS application requirements.
3) Ever-Increasing Security Demands
Nobody wakes up thinking that their company's Wi-Fi network, or the company as a whole, is about to be the target of a cyber-attack.
It seems like a well-publicised security breach, ransomware attack, or denial of service incident takes down a popular website almost every day.
We also read constant reports of Businesses suffering Data breaches (and these are the big guys)
How does a small business keep their company's wireless network secure while also attending to all of their supported end-users competing needs?
It doesn't have to be a disgruntled ex-employee or a Cybercriminal on the other side of the world. It could simply be a desperate competitor who hired a geeky teenager to sniff for passwords into your most important databases using a protocol analyser on your unsecured Wi-Fi network.
How CAN a small IT team cope with ever-increasing security requirements? It's no easy task!
4) Multiple Locations
So, what happens if a severe lightning storm strikes three of your sites within 30 minutes, causing a wave of surges and power outages? While you're gathering information and getting ready to get in your car, a tree falls on the roof of the main location you're leaving, causing a leak in your computer room and shorting out all of your network infrastructure hardware.
Ok a bit dramatic I know but you get the idea
Imagine you have four locations and 120 end-users sitting on their hands, alienating customers, ruining your company's reputation, and blaming the IT department.
Where do you begin to determine whether these are Wi-Fi hardware failures? Could some remote tier 2 troubleshooting by a skilled technician bring one or more of these locations back in a matter of minutes?
Extremely difficult for a small IT team to accomplish in a timely manner that meets real business needs and minimises damage.
5) Lack of Human Resources
You've been caught off guard because the severe thunderstorm didn't check with you to see if it’s arrival would be convenient for your small IT team. Your only other member of your IT team, a junior network administrator, has gone down with the flu and won't be back for at least another three business days.
And two days from now it’s a Half term, you’ve promised the family quality time away and really should be frantically running around dealing with packing, and organising petcare and all the other normal stresses that people face when they have a life outside of work.
You head up a small IT team. The buck stops with you. So, at least for now, having a life outside of your job isn't in the cards. Not easy to tell you're excited family that.
6) No Advanced Enterprise Wi-Fi Expertise
Wi-Fi was regarded as a nice-to-have ten years ago, rather than a necessity. Today, however, this is no longer the case.
If your wireless network goes down, you might as well open the cash register drawer and start shredding hundred-pound bills for most types of businesses. Yes, downtime costs a lot of money!
And it gets even more complicated because most businesses place unreasonable demands on their IT departments to support a dizzying array of applications without adequate staffing or training.
As an IT manager, you are an excellent generalist when it comes to covering your company's most important line of business applications as well as basic hardware and software troubleshooting.
But you've probably never had the opportunity to help design, install, and maintain enterprise Wi-Fi networks. Your management team and end-users, on the other hand, expect their Wi-Fi network to work flawlessly 100% of the time.
So, what do you do if no one on your team has experience with enterprise Wi-Fi?
How Wi-Fi as a Service will solve Wi-Fi Problems Faced by Small IT Teams
Total Group has installed and supported hundreds of Wifi networks so understand how tricky it might be for smaller IT teams to quickly and effectively troubleshoot even the most basic Wi-Fi network issues.
That's why we created a Managed Wi-Fi subscription, designed to resolve the Wifi issues falling to small IT departments for good.
With our Wifi as a Service You'll get a professionally designed, installed, optimised, monitored, managed, and supported Wi-Fi network at one monthly cost:
- The right hardware -- based on expert, enterprise Wi-Fi design and engineering -- that provides a great end-user experience
- Software -- Get the benefit of cloud-based tools and resources for managing your Wi-Fi network
- Managed Service - ongoing support including 24/7 network monitoring and a people-friendly support help desk.
Business Financial Benefits of Wifi as a Service
Even though most business now realise the need for an enterprise Wifi solution, Captial expenditure and budget is often a barrier.
In a similar way that we have moved from purchasing software as a big expense upfront to monthly software subscriptions, Managed Wi-fi and Wi-Fi as a service can provide a small business with an affordable monthly subscription option.
You won’t need to worry about the hardware becoming obsolete because you will receive a scheduled hardware upgrade as part of the service. The hardware is all included as part of your subscription.
This way you move your wireless networking from a capital expense to an operational expense which may please your finance team!