Integrated network managemntNetwork management has come a long way in recent years – with the proliferation of broadband internet, cloud storage, virtualisation and the device revolution, expectations for consistent up time and speedy service are at an all-time high. Many people in the IT landscape may be heralding the death of the server room, but while there’s certainly reason to consider outsourcing your network management, is there no future in integrated network management? In this blog, I’ll take a look at the pros and cons of managing your network on-premise.

What is integrated network management?

Integrated (or hosted) management is how networks were managed traditionally – before the cloud, broadband internet and Software as a Service changed the way we interact with networks. In other words, integrated network management involves maintaining all your network infrastructure on-premise. Maintenance in Integrated Network Management had to be carried out either by manually checking all devices and peripherals or setting up a network monitoring tool.

The buck ends here.

As much as most IT professionals enjoy taking responsibility for any improvements to their networks, in an on-premise management solution, the buck ends with you and your team. If something critical is missed or a device fails due to incorrect setup of the software, you are the one left ultimately responsible.  In this case it’s essential to make sure the initial due diligence and setup is done correctly. This task doesn’t necessarily have to be taken on alone, as the right solution provider will guide and assist you through the initial setup process – but managing and monitoring your network internally will fall to your in-house technical team.

Time is money, and any way to save it matters.

Time is our most precious commodity, and managing your network infrastructure on-premise means you’ll have to assign your already productive staff to the task of keeping track of the reports and incidents, taking precious time away from more valuable projects or tasks.  It’s important to manage this correctly, in order to mitigate the risk and make sure all KPIs are still met.

On-premise management tailor made for you.

One of the most compelling benefits of opting for an integrated solution is the fact that customising it for your complex individual needs is a very real option.  You didn’t get a network monitoring tool because your network topology is basic – so customization will more than likely be a requirement. This can be done in the initial setup, with the help of consultants, and managed over time by you and your team.

Updates and upgrades

In the information revolution that we find ourselves today, new technologies seem to crop up overnight and make your existing infrastructure obsolete. As a result, most suppliers tie you into costly upgrades and licensing fees. You can be sure that within a few years, newer functionality will be available as well as critical updates and patches.  These patches and updates will more than likely be tasked to your team.  The other question is of course: “Will this cause any downtime?”

Making the right choice when choosing your solution and partnering with a vendor that understands these risks is paramount.

If you’re considering outsourcing your network management, or if you’d like to find out more about IRIS and our Network Management Software solutions, please download our free Network Manager’s Guide.

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