Having a strong WiFi network is practically a necessity in today's business world. Your employees want it so that they can incorporate their personal devices into their work, and your customers/visitors expect it as a courtesy.
However, there's a difference between merely having a WiFi network, and having a good WiFi network. Implementing WiFi means more than just throwing a couple off-the-shelf access points onto your walls and calling it a day. A proper WiFi network can boost your business and your customer appreciation, while a poor network can slow down work or even introduce new security hazards.
By having a professional wireless site survey and network assessment, you get a wealth of information about how your network performs, and how to make it better. This one-time survey can pay off for years by helping you implement a highly-effective network. Here's how it works.
What You Get From A Wireless Site Survey And Network Assessment
1 - Proper WiFi coverage
Good WiFi coverage in a business boils down to two fundamental elements: it provides WiFi everywhere it's needed, and doesn't provide WiFi anywhere else.
This may seem obvious, but that second point -in particular- is more important than it might sound. You don't want your WiFi coverage to extend so far past your own business that people can "camp" your WiFi from across the street. That's an invitation for abuse! In a worse-case scenario, they might even use your WiFi for malicious purposes, leaving you to take the blame since it would be traced back to your business.
So one of the first and most important purposes of a wireless site survey is to check your access point placement, and potentially relocate them to create more stable areas of coverage. This will also take into account areas within your business that block WiFi, and prevent any dead zones from occurring.
2 - Less downtime
How often does your network go offline, and it's not the fault of your ISP? Modern WiFi access points should be able to operate for weeks or months with little or no interruption in service. However, this relies on them being properly configured, and many access points, especially older models, can be very difficult to configure correctly.
As part of your wireless network assessment, the team will talk to you about your overall goals and plans for the network, and ensure it's properly configured to allow that to happen.
3 - Improved security
When it comes to cyber-crime, no business is safe, no matter how big or small. Many of the most nefarious types of malware are "broad spectrum," targeting anyone that happens to stumble upon them. "Ransomware," which locks down your hard drive and networks until you pay a ransom to the criminals, is particularly known for this behavior.
So, if you have a WiFi network at your business, it needs to be protected! Proper network assessors and security consultants can check the reliability of the security on your network, and suggest changes\upgrades that will improve your situation. Following their advice would be a very good idea, because there is currently no real protection against cyber-crime except what you implement on your own network.
4 - A better customer/visitor experience
Your visitors basically expect free WiFi at the businesses they frequent, and numerous studies over the years have confirmed this. People will actively seek out businesses that provide WiFi, especially in the food or hospitality sectors.
Of course, the better the experience is, the happier they'll be. Having a strong, fast connection that's able to support numerous users at once will result in better overall customer ratings, and better loyalty as well. On the other hand, WiFi which is slow or drops connections too often can create a frustrating, distracting experience.
Basically, if you're going to have customer-facing WiFi, it needs to perform well. A WiFi network assessment helps make this happen.
5 - Planning for the future
The state of the art in networking is always pushing forward, and your business will be growing. Inevitably, the day will come that you'll need to look into upgrading your network. Do you have a path planned out for upgrades? Is your network scalable, or would you have to rip it out and replace everything?
Scalability is the true goal, and a WiFi network assessment can help make that possible. The assessors will talk to you about your longer-term plans, and help you make networking decisions that ensure future upgrades will go smoothly. This advice can save you plenty of time and money later on down the line!
Hummingbird Knows Networks
We are respected experts at custom-building networks for a wide variety of purposes and organizations. From small startups, to large institutions, we have the knowledge, experience, and vast stock to create perfect custom networks for your needs.