Connectivity is the most important contributor to the long-term success of your business. A structured cabling system improves your network efficiency and is worth the investment. But paying for a poorly-designed system at the start can put your business in jeopardy.
Data center professionals are reevaluating what makes a successful structured cabling system. Older designs don’t support the technologies businesses need to stay competitive. Leaders fail to see how a structured cabling system can help with their customers’ needs.
The business benefits of using a structured cabling system are multiplying. Proprietary point-to-point methods were widely used in older control systems. But they can’t compete with IP technologies that are fueling industries today.
In 2018, critical data and transactions must run through more devices and systems. This is also true of small businesses, as this technology becomes more accessible. Businesses building new infrastructures must prepare for their competition.
What to Know About Selecting a Structured Cabling System
You must consider all physical and digital factors when choosing a system design. This begins with ensuring uptime and reducing costs. The physical layout of your business, for example, impacts both cost and performance.
What products will you use for cabling and connections? What types of equipment will it support now and in the future? Factoring this in at your initial investment can save you heavy expenses later.
The most important consideration is your customers. Will your system support high-speed data that you share with them? What are the risks your new system poses to customer retention?
You can overcome all these obstacles by setting the right standards. Standards ensure the installation’s consistency and design. You can streamline documentation and foundations for future expansion as well.
5 Things to Look for in Your New Cabling System
Not all systems are equal. Designing a structured approach to cabling takes foresight into future technology needs. Balancing the budget and ideal design is an early difficulty as well.
The following qualities of a great system will help you set standards for your solution. Consider your business needs as you review these options. Then, think about how your new system will help you deliver future success.
1. Flexible Support for a Wide Range of Services
Data centers are often seen as repositories for reference data. Those views are changing as they support more and more business functions. Leaders look to data centers to enable business users and drive the bottom line.
Technology needs will change in response to evolving business demands. When that happens, you will need infrastructure that can adapt to those needs quickly. Structured cabling systems have become high-traffic assets to global usage of data centers.
This increase in usage creates greater risks associated with downtime. That’s because shared use of insufficient bandwidth strangles data traffic. You can lose critical business functions at the times they are most needed.
The right structured cabling solution can reduce downtime, even with scaling of usage. The rule of thumb is to buy the greatest bandwidth you can afford. It is a segment of your investment that is most likely to make or break you in the future.
2. Seamless Cloud Application Hosting and Flexibility
Businesses are using cloud infrastructure for greater scaling and flexibility. Cloud is cost effective and allows business users to access resources from anywhere. They reduce the cost of on-premise infrastructure as well.
Based on recent industry results, cloud technologies will not be a short-term trend. Even if you have no existing plans, you should expect a future migration to the cloud. Doing so will increase your cabling needs.
You will need a cabling system to support rapid growth and Big Data traffic. You will need to support high usage rates for all your business users as well. You must respond to these changes to maintain a competitive edge for your business.
Your solution provider can tell you which leading-edge cabling technologies to use. This is another area where you must invest in the best solutions. Replacing them later is costly.
3. Enterprise-Wide Virtualization Services
Most companies run workloads on virtual machines, no matter the company’s size. And the vast majority of virtualization service providers are data centers. You should prepare for this need at the beginning of your cabling system investment.
Virtualization is a cost-effective networking option that supports several functions. Users at all levels of the organization can use these functions for storing critical data or accessing personal desktops. And virtualization needs a foundation in structured cabling.
As your team uses shared virtual storage or creates new virtual networks, they put a strain on your data cabling. You can design cabling for complete efficiency to support these changes. You can also consider how to save on electricity during these processes.
This is another instance where your foundation is critical. It may be difficult to foresee these needs. But failing to prepare now will increase costs down the line.
4. Mobile Device Support for Business Users
Industries like field service employ hundreds of mobile devices serving a range of purposes. Technicians in the field may use Augmented Reality to connect with experts at headquarters. Companies use mobile tools for scheduling and routing equipment as well.
All of these devices transmit business data. All of this business data must flow through the data center, even as it is stored in the cloud. A mobile workforce requires high levels of availability which can incur serious costs.
If your business will have high mobility needs, consider what cabling solutions will support them. This is an area where you may have more certainty about your future. Your investment should reflect that in a realistic way.
5. Uniform Documentation, Security, and Compliance
The systems you purchase will come with specific documentation and compliance requirements. They may also have unique needs in terms of security. Don’t oversee these issues as you select components for your system.
Your solutions partner can find streamlined solutions for these requirements. Standardizing these processes will reduce costs and save time.
This is an area where you can drive down costs without risking performance. Just find the right service provider for you.
Choose Your Structured Cabling System Provider
Now you know how cabling factors into your long-term business success. You’ve established some criteria for what a successful system will look like for you.
Get started with a consultation from O.B. One Communications. Share your business needs and we’ll deliver a customized solution to meet your goals. It’s never too early to start talking about an investment that will serve your business for decades to come.