10 Network Management Best Practices

In at present’s linked world, an organization’s network is the spine of its enterprise. However, the rising variety of gadgets, endpoints, and applied sciences that enterprises use makes community administration more and more advanced.

For instance, the fashionable community now helps not simply PCs and servers but in addition an ever-growing number of good gadgets like thermostats, door locks, and even merchandising machines. A State of IoT report by analysis firm IoT Analytics initiatives that there might be 25 billion linked IoT (Internet of Things) gadgets by 2025.

Below, we talk about a few of the most essential community administration greatest practices and likewise have a look at some future developments in community administration.

Why It’s Important to Manage a Network Effectively

It’s critically essential to handle a community successfully for a lot of causes:

To guarantee optimum efficiency

A enterprise can’t afford to have a gradual or unreliable community. Not solely does this impression worker productiveness, nevertheless it additionally impacts the corporate’s backside line. In order to make sure optimum efficiency, it’s essential to commonly monitor the community and make crucial modifications and upgrades as wanted. Additionally, a plan for coping with disruptions, similar to outages or malware assaults, needs to be created.

To guard safety

A community that isn’t correctly managed is extra vulnerable to safety breaches. Without a safe community, a enterprise is liable to being hacked, which may result in data breaches and different severe safety points.

To guarantee compliance

Depending on the trade, there could also be sure compliance rules that want adherence. For instance, the HIPAA regulation within the healthcare trade requires strict community administration in an effort to defend affected person knowledge. Failure to stick to those compliance rules may result in hefty fines and even shedding a enterprise licenses.

Save prices on a number of ranges

An efficient community administration technique might help save prices on a number of ranges. For instance, by automating duties, the necessity for handbook labor will be decreased, which might help save on payroll prices. In addition, community managers can save on misplaced productiveness and income by decreasing downtime and enhancing community efficiency.

Guide catastrophe restoration

In the occasion of a catastrophe, similar to a fireplace or a flood, community managers want to have the ability to rapidly and simply get better knowledge. A well-documented community administration plan can be sure that a community is rapidly and simply recovered within the occasion of a catastrophe.

Automate important duties

Network administration software program might help automate important duties, similar to monitoring community efficiency, making use of safety patches, and backing up knowledge. Network managers can unlock time to concentrate on different core enterprise duties by automating these duties.

Gather knowledge for future forecasting

Network administration software program can even assist community managers collect knowledge that can be utilized for future forecasting. This knowledge can be utilized to plan for future community upgrades, capability planning, and extra.

List of Network Management Best Practices

Below are 10 community administration greatest practices that each group ought to observe:

1. Understand the community

Good community administration begins with a transparent understanding of the community. Network managers must have a transparent understanding of its construction and parts.

First, assess the massive image by mapping out the community topology. Then, establish the kind of community (Ethernet, (*10*), LAN, and so on.) and develop into accustomed to the gadgets which are used to construct it (switches, routers, gateways, and so on.). Finally, familiarize your self with the OSI mannequin, which offers a framework for understanding how knowledge flows by a community.

With this data in hand, community managers might be in a a lot better place to develop a administration plan that meets the enterprise’s particular wants.

2. Identify important infrastructure and methods

In any group, there are at all times going to be mission-critical methods and gadgets. In an workplace setting, for instance, the e-mail server is prone to be one of the vital essential items of community infrastructure. If it goes down, productiveness suffers.

For this motive, the most effective practices in network management is to establish these important parts and provides them precedence consideration. This means guaranteeing they’re correctly configured, monitored, and maintained.

3. Understand and implement safety greatest practices

One of the very best practices is knowing community defenses and implementing safety greatest practices. Network safety consists of insurance policies, processes, and practices for monitoring the community’s well being; detecting vulnerabilities; and stopping unauthorized entry.

Understanding community defenses can enable community managers to extra successfully detect and stop potential threats. By commonly reviewing these parts, directors can be sure that the community is safe and operating effectively.

One instance of a safety greatest observe is proscribing entry to delicate knowledge. There are a lot of methods to limit entry to knowledge, together with bodily safety measures like locked doorways and laptop room entry management methods (RACS), in addition to logical safety measures like person permissions and data encryption.

4. Understand compliance necessities

While complying with rules will be difficult, compliance is important to keep away from expensive fines and different regulatory sanctions. And the most effective methods to make sure compliance is to have an intensive understanding of the necessities.

Network administration is a fancy process, and it may be troublesome to maintain monitor of the entire completely different rules that apply to a enterprise. However, by taking the time to know compliance necessities, community managers can develop insurance policies and procedures that may preserve the community in compliance with legal guidelines similar to HIPAA, Sarbanes-Oxley, PCI DSS, GDPR, and so forth, relying on the trade.

5. Train and retrain workers

Employees should be commonly reminded of primary data safety measures, similar to password safety and avoiding phishing scams. They additionally should be accustomed to widespread community issues and methods to resolve them. By guaranteeing workers are up-to-date on all points of community administration, directors might help to forestall expensive disruptions and make sure the community runs like clockwork.

6. Monitor the community

Monitoring is important to maintaining the community operating easily. Network managers can rapidly set up a baseline for regular habits and establish potential issues by monitoring knowledge from a number of customers and gadgets. In addition, monitoring helps to make sure the excessive availability of important methods and eliminates the necessity for multiple-point options.

By configuring a strong dashboard, community managers can simply regulate all of the essential indicators of community well being. And by watching out for alert storms, they will keep away from being overwhelmed by alerts and preserve a transparent view of the state of affairs.

Check out our record of network management tools which are out there to assist with this process.

7. Create a catastrophe restoration plan

Disaster restoration is low-hanging fruit on the subject of community administration, nevertheless it’s typically uncared for. That’s a mistake. A well-crafted disaster recovery plan can imply the distinction between a minor setback and a serious disaster.

The first step in making a catastrophe restoration plan is to establish the almost definitely hazards. This will differ relying on the situation and sort of enterprise, however widespread hazards embrace hearth, flood, earthquake, energy outage, and penetration by felony parts.

Once the hazards have been recognized, the subsequent step is to develop methods for mitigating their results. This might contain such measures as backing up knowledge, investing in redundant methods, growing evacuation procedures, restoring entry to important functions, and offering alternate connectivity choices.

The aim is to attenuate downtime and be sure that the group can proceed to perform even within the face of a serious disruption.

8. Automate duties

Automation needs to be easy, with little danger and quick execution. For instance, community workers can use automated gadget locators to find the place a tool connects to the community, and verify software connectivity. Automation can even assist confirm that every community infrastructure gadget is linked correctly with its neighbor, and detect inconsistencies between components of community configurations and firm configuration templates.

Automating repetitive duties frees up time for extra inventive work, resulting in a extra environment friendly and efficient community administration staff.

9. Test the community commonly

It’s not sufficient to have a community that works; it must work effectively. That’s why testing is a necessary a part of community administration. By commonly testing the efficiency of the community, community managers can establish and resolve potential issues earlier than they develop into disruptive. In addition, testing helps to make sure the community meets the altering wants of the enterprise.

10. Gather knowledge for future forecasting

Network knowledge can be utilized to foretell future community wants. This is very priceless when planning for development or growth. By understanding how the community is presently getting used, community managers could make knowledgeable selections about capability planning and keep away from over or under-buying assets.

Network knowledge will also be used to establish developments and spot potential issues. For instance, if there’s a sudden spike in community visitors, it might be a sign of a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) assault.

Future Trends in Network Management

The community administration panorama is continually evolving. New applied sciences, new challenges, and new alternatives are rising on a regular basis. Here are a few of the most essential developments that community managers should observe:

The rise of SD-WAN

Software-defined huge space networks (SD-WANs) have gotten more and more in style as a method to enhance community efficiency and scale back prices.

The development of 5G and IoT

The velocity, capability, and low latency of 5G will allow a complete new vary of functions and providers. But together with all the advantages, 5G may even deliver new challenges for community managers. The sheer variety of gadgets that might be linked to the community might be unprecedented, and managing all these connections would require new instruments and methods.

In addition, 5G networks might be way more advanced than at present’s networks, with a number of layers of various applied sciences working collectively. As 5G and IoT develop into a actuality, community managers might want to adapt and evolve to satisfy the calls for of the brand new period.

The rise of synthetic intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) is starting to make its method into community administration, with the promise of simplifying advanced community duties and offering real-time insights. AI-powered community administration instruments are nonetheless of their infancy, however they maintain nice promise for the long run.

The development of edge computing

Edge computing is a distributed computing mannequin wherein knowledge is processed on the fringe of the community, near the information supply. Edge computing is turning into more and more essential as an increasing number of gadgets are linked to the community. With edge computing, knowledge will be processed rapidly and effectively with out touring again to a central knowledge heart.

The transfer to the cloud

More and extra companies are transferring their community infrastructure to the cloud. This development is being pushed by the necessity for flexibility, scalability, and price financial savings.


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