Why You Should Consider Network Capacity Planning

It Does a Data Center Good

Justin Baron

Upgrading your network may seem like a task too huge to even contemplate, especially since you have to figure out how to fit it all into your budget – and leave room for further expansion down the road. I’ll tell you how creating a plan for upgrading your network will make sure it fits your needs today, and continues to evolve as your organization grows.

If You Fail to Plan, You Plan to Fail

Maybe a network capacity plan isn’t a priority for your organization right now, but it’s key that IT stays one step ahead of the business. Proper capacity planning helps to shift the ratio of IT operations from reactive to proactive. Ultimately, IT’s goal is to improve end-user workflows, to enable better productivity and, at the same time, improve operational efficiencies to reduce costs. So it’s never a bad time to draw up a plan for expanding your network.

We know it’s difficult for you to predict how your organization is going to grow and change over time. And as the marketplace changes, you’re looking for increased collaboration among users, to provide the best possible experience for your clients, and to maintain a competitive advantage. We also know you don’t want to overspend on IT. So how do you determine the right size, the right tools, the right tactics, the right timing, and then ultimately what the right investment strategy is? Assessing your current setup and creating a plan is the best way to ensure your organization can stay competitive as its needs develop and change.

Head to the Cloud or Stay on the Ground?

Right now, moving your IT assets to the cloud is the hot practice, and there are significant benefits to making the move to cloud computing:

• Increased uptime
• Cost-effective way to handle spikes in workloads
• Achieve economies of scale
• Reduce capital expenditures – less money spent on infrastructure or licensing
• Anywhere, anytime access in this era of mobile computing

But remember, the cloud also presents challenges:

• How do you make sure that you can support SLAs across your various IT systems and workloads? • How do you handle federation between your on-premise systems and the cloud systems with the cloud providers?
• How can you ensure that you can enforce your business security standards?
• How do you monitor an increasingly distributed IT environment?
• Does cloud offer the level of control that IT really wants and needs (and has become accustomed to)?

Again, here is where creating a network capacity plan will help you out, so you can work out how best to balance the convenience of cloud with the control IT needs over its assets.

Network Scalability Matters

When you’re looking into upgrading your on-premise system, scalable network technologies are the way to go. They’ll let you grow your network with your organization – and adapt to changing functions – while keeping your budget under control. For example, look for flexible networking solutions that offer scaling capacity in somewhat of a grid-like manner, for things like core switching, telephony, and video systems. The overall idea here is to make sure you choose proper platforms and deployment tactics that will allow you to grow as you evolve.

Now that you know the benefits of creating a network capacity plan to adapt with your organization’s growing needs, it’s a great time to give Connection a call. We’re ready to help you create that plan and to implement it. We offer a wide variety of consulting, assessment, and engineering services, in addition to on-going support and guidance.