Converging Communication Networks – Emerging Cabling Considerations
While IT managers tend to function mostly in real time – meeting evolving needs and handling crises – they also worry about the future of their networks. Their jobs are to anticipate, meet, and (hopefully) exceed business needs and objectives to the satisfaction of everyone from managers and internal end users to external customers, partners and suppliers.
And, they must do it all while considering how competitive global issues and information technology can leverage their positions.
What these managers really need are answers to four key performance/value questions on network cabling:
- How can I, on behalf of my business, get the desired results in the best way possible while working within specific parameters for cost, reliability, performance, grade and quality of service, bandwidth, etc.?
- How can I be sure that the end results are compelling—i.e., that they satisfy or exceed the established outcome criteria?
- How can I satisfy the needs of those who turn to me and my organization for IT support?
- Who is the best vendor(s) to take our infrastructure to where it must be while enabling maximum performance, easy accommodation to dynamic changes, and minimal total cost of ownership on budgets, staff and end users?
The answers to these questions go to the heart of why any enterprise deploys network cabling. It is ultimately all about laying a foundation for people and work, and in this regard, the cabling infrastructure must:
- Satisfy internal and external customers.
- Increase productivity by helping people manage their time better, and by shortening move, add, change (MAC) processes and/or response times.
- Increase revenues by speeding response times, easily expanding to accommodate higher speed applications and pleasing customers.
- Reduce costs for the creation and delivery of network services, the operation and maintenance of the infrastructure, and any potential expansion.
- Solve unscheduled business issues such as network downtime and human error.
The focus of network cabling has undergone a not-so-subtle shift. Qualitative assessments such as performance, ease of use, and value have superceded quantitative measures like speed, electrical/optical parameters, and cost as the true drivers of technology deployment. IT managers want to know as much about what a cabling solution will do for them as about what it does. And technology for technology’s sake has taken a deserved backseat to using technology to enable business success.
In addition, it is important to acknowledge that there is no one path or a single “correct” timetable to the converged infrastructure of the future. There are only options and issues that need to be constantly evaluated in the light of changing internal and external circumstances. Every organization will need to be transitioned to this future a little differently. Thus, every IT manager wants to know, “Whom can I trust on this journey to the future?”
The CommScope Infrastructure Academy hopes to build trust through the sharing of knowledge. In particular, the SP3000 Structured Cabling Infrastructure Design course is a comprehensive look at all aspects of design and implementation of network infrastructure cabling.
How do you consider what cabling your network requires?