When hundreds of students need to download 100 MB files, you want to leverage all your available bandwidth, instead of having backup lines just sitting there idle.
As the abilities of technology increase, so has the reliance and use of technology to expand and stay ahead of (or just keep up with) the competition. This has created a greater demand for reliable networks with unlimited bandwidth. For a growing business, keeping up with these needs can be very difficult– especially on a slow or unstable network.
Companies are taking substantial measures to limit the impact of a shortage of bandwidth to allow proper access to their network for employees and critical business functions. This includes company-wide bans on bandwidth hogging applications instead of providing a reliable and robust network. While many large companies spend time and money analyzing bandwidth use and blocking bandwidth eating websites from employees, there are WAN solutions that allow for a seamless network and protection from outages and slow connections.
Automatic Updates – A sneaky bandwidth eater that is often overlooked is the automatic update. Whether Critical-on-Demand (COD), driver updates, service pack updates or security updates, all types of automatic updates consume a considerable amount of bandwidth.
CRM & Marketing Automation – Today, internal processes rely on access to systems like CRMs and Marketing Automation systems. It’s not just sales and marketing that suffer when these tools are inaccessible, productivity throughout the organization goes down. CRMs are no longer just a place for representatives to take notes about customer calls, they’ve become analytics dashboards for the health of the business. Marketing automation systems have become the connective tissue between the organization, their customers and return on investment from business tactics.
Email – There are few jobs that don’t require frequent email use. While sending an email might not stall your network, constant use, updates, and leaving email applications open for the entire workday can put a strain on a network dependent on available bandwidth.
File Sharing – File sharing and storage using the Cloud is a massively popular trend led by Dropbox, SoonR, SendSpace and others. These programs, similar to email providers like Microsoft Outlook, often hide instead of close and remain open, taking up bandwidth throughout the workday.
IP Video Surveillance – Streaming video surveillance, like accessing television through the Internet, requires significant storage capabilities to store footage, and bandwidth to watch and monitor.
Malware – Malware and viruses are often the cause of an instant jump in bandwidth use, slowing down your network significantly. Protect your WAN by implementing security measures to block malware attempts, and keep track of bandwidth usage to detect breaches quickly.
Real-Time Data Backup – As with file sharing programs, real-time backups stay open and in use during the day and are a necessary measure for companies dealing with sensitive and streaming data.
Time-Wasting Applications – Websites and applications including Facebook, YouTube, and Pandora are slowing down networks across the world on a daily basis, but depending on your business, they may still be an important resource to employees.
VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol applications, also referred to as IP or broadband telephony, include Skype and Google Talk. Reaching someone in an instant with video is easier than ever, but it takes a significant amount of bandwidth to operate, and requires a robust network to work effectively.
VDI – Virtual desktop infrastructures allow employees to access corporate resources and their work desktop from anywhere. As distributed workforces continue to grow, use of VDI’s will increase as well, requiring a network to support this use.
The solution to speed up your network may not be limiting the use of applications and websites among employees, but having the right equipment in place. The right equipment can increase network productivity and prevent outages. Analyze your needs and your current network, equipment, and service provider.
In addition to known bandwidth eaters, Shadow IT isn’t in the shadows anymore– it’s happening at nearly every organization. Technology purchases and management are being done by non-IT managers and employees across the company, including executives.
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