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Coming to a WAP near You: BYOD & Future of Corporate Internet Access

Published on 24 May 17

In the times that we live in, internet access at work has assumed utmost importance. It affects all aspects of work if you do not have an internet connection that you can count on, prime examples being communication and efficiency which are quick to witness a downfall if the internet fails. All the businesses now realize that gone are the days when plugging a router would provide them with the network that they required.

Numerous network devices are used in an office setting, and various factors influence the performance of a network. These include the wireless channels, load balancing, and wireless access point placement among other things. Take a look around you to determine a number of devices that connect to the network and depend on it for optimal function. Refrigerators are an example of this. It alerts the owner regarding the need for replacement of the filter owing to the network connection. Living in the digital world has its price, and thus everything in our life is connected to the network in one way or the other.

Wireless Site Surveys are an Annual Maintenance Expectation

Even if you do not have any complaints with the performance of your network following its installation, keep in mind that the interference sources along with the levels change with the passage of time, even the layout of the office does not remain stagnant. Various factors such as the presence of metal filing cabinets or poor insulation of wires can lead to a poor network, as the signal is unable to reach all the areas of your office.

If peak network performance is to be attained, performing a site survey is among the most important steps as stated by a field engineer. If this step is not seen through, one ends up with problems such as poor Quality of Service (QoS), frequent signal drops, insufficient signal strength and dead zones among other things.

Attention needs to be paid to the placement of Wireless Access point (WAP). It also needs to be fine-tuned so as to insure that quality signal is provided to everyone. The site survey troubleshoots and identifies the presence of any problem while at the same time providing you with the tools that would enable you to combat the issues.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Workplace Culture is Straining your Network

It is common for employees to bring their gadgets and devices with them to the workplace. According to them, since they are comfortable with their own devices, they find it easier to work with them which inadvertently lead to enhanced efficiency.

However, this culture serves to aggravate the stress faced by your IT team. They need to take measures for securing all the devices and dealing with the increased connections which is not going to be an easy feat.

Certain steps can be taken by the IT team to support the BYOD policy. This would not compromise the network speed, or would not have an adverse impact on its reliability and security.

1. A specific, widely distributed BYOD policy needs to be established by the company.

2. A site survey needs to be conducted by the IT department, which would pay heed to the area from where your team works. For instance, it is not important to have a reliable network in a supply closet as compared to a conference room or cubicles.

3. Testing of the network should be done during different periods throughout the day so that time-sensitive sources of interference can be identified. This would also enable them to gauge the spikes in workload.

4. Cloud-based data systems can also prove to be of value as they enable end-to-end encryption, thereby providing optimal security.

5. Using device management rights can get the desired results that can be implemented by means of data access settings on the personal devices. It would also be a good idea to set strong passwords which are frequently changed. Using virtual private network (VPN) can also enhance the personal device security.

One might wonder if enabling BYOD policy is worth the effort. However, it has been seen that as many as 75% of the companies implement this policy. This is because implementation of this policy has led to an increase in productivity, as it keeps the employees engaged and they do not face the need to acquire technical support.

They have been using the devices for long, and thus the devices suit them. They do not have to go through the trouble of understanding new devices. This takes stress off shoulders while at the same time insuring that no time is wasted.

If BYOD culture is to be supported, a secure network is required that would be capable of overcoming the sources of the everyday interface. Via site survey, you can insure that your network is capable of providing the desired results. Thus, annual maintenance contracts which include the annual site surveys have become routine in corporate America.
This blog is listed under IT Strategy & Management and Networks & IT Infrastructure Community

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