Unified communications and collaboration strategies should include remote performance management

unifiedcomms

The move to Unified Communications and Collaboration (UC&C) is accelerating rapidly as technologies mature and early adopters reap competitive advantages like reduced costs, simplified IT infrastructure, better customer service and improved business performance. The growing availability of UC&C-as-a-service means that companies of all sizes are embracing the trend.

UC&C encompasses the convergence of telephony, messaging, video conferencing, presence-enabled applications and mobile communications; all over a common, IP-based network. That means there’s a lot riding on your network – both in terms of traffic and also in terms of critical business activity. Then, when you add cloud- or SaaS-based applications, virtual desktops and all the other IP-based services that your organization is increasingly dependent on, the performance of your network is more important than ever before.

As staggering amounts of traffic pile onto today’s networks, the business risk associated with poor or inconsistent network performance is too great to leave to chance. All these services depend entirely on high-bandwidth, low-latency networks. When performance degrades beyond a specific threshold, applications tend to sputter and fail abruptly.

As organizations of all sizes realize the value, and make the move to UC&C, the paramount importance of successfully monitoring network performance in real-time, not only at headquarters but also across remote and distributed sites, becomes crystal clear. What are employees, customers and partners in disparate locations experiencing as they interact with these services? In many organizations there’s no way to know… until there are complaints.

How can organizations monitor and troubleshoot UC&C and other IP-based applications? SNMP-based tools, for example, aren’t designed to monitor network- and location-dependent application service levels. Traditional Netflow analyzers collect a wealth of IP traffic data, but are prohibitively expensive, consume significant amounts of bandwidth themselves, and can only monitor networks you own. Hence they are of limited use in most distributed environments, where traffic inevitably flows over service provider and public pipes.

The only cost effective answer is an active Remote Performance Management solution. Integrated Remote Performance Management capabilities let you remotely and continuously monitor and troubleshoot any network infrastructure used for the deployment of UC&C and other IP-based services. Insight into the perspective of remote site performance enables organizations to ensure that their critical voice services, video conference, or collaboration solution will perform – with predictability and cost efficiency.

Available as a cloud-based service, Remote Performance Management takes minutes to install, is highly scalable and cost-effective for organizations of any size.

Jim Melvin is currently the President & Chief Executive Officer at AppNeta. Prior to AppNeta, Jim was the vice president of marketing and security solutions at RSA, The Security Division of EMC. In this role, he was responsible for corporate, field, solutions, channel, and partner marketing; corporate and marketing communications; interactive and web programs; press and industry analyst relations; and RSA Conference events worldwide. Jim has been awarded three US patents in fault tolerant systems design. He holds a B.S. in computer engineering and an M.S. in management from Worcester Polytechnic Institute; and sits on the board of directors at Fortisphere, and Cape Cod Beer.