On a scale from one to ten, how would you rate your current WiFi? While that sounds like a generic customer service question, it is actually an important point that companies need to review on a yearly basis. That’s because the workplace is ever changing, with employees now more than ever relying on wireless connections to accomplish their jobs.
When you step back to evaluate your WiFi, consider three key points:
Speed - how fast does your connection allow you to work?
Strength - how much can your network handle before it slows down?
Security - is your network up-to-date with the latest in cyber security?
As you consider those key points, see how you can apply them to these 5 reasons your business should upgrade its WiFi:
1) You’ve Never Had More Users
There are not nearly as many jobs today as there were years ago that don’t require internet access. In most business office environments, every employee needs to connect to the internet in order to complete their tasks, and the more users you place on a single WiFi network, the more weight in has to hold.
Think of trying to commute into downtown Chicago during rush hour everyday: the highway (network) isn’t big enough to accommodate so many cars (users), so everyone has to drive (use the internet) more slowly than they would like to.
Not only do more and more people require reliable internet access on the job, but their devices and need for mobility are growing, too.
2) The Evolution of BYOD
Rewind five years, and you’ll find that the majority of employees would connect to the internet via a wired connection. Each desk came equipped with an ethernet access point, and it worked really well for everyone - the connections your team experienced were fast and secure.
However, in today’s workplace, being tethered to a desk via an ethernet cable isn’t always feasible. After all, many businesses have multiple floors and meeting rooms and employees travel from one place to the next with their laptops. On top of that, it isn’t uncommon for an employee to have three or even four devices in the workplace at one time (smartphone, tablet, laptop, and desktop) that all demand WiFi connection.
In case you aren’t familiar with it, this movement of bringing your own devices into the workplace is simply known as BYOD, and it can place a lot of stress on your current network.
3) Growing Reliance on Applications
When you first hear the word “applications,” you may picture playing a game like Solitaire or your podcast app of choice, but in reality, an “application” is any web-based tool or program you use. Some of the most common applications in a business setting include Google Drive, OneDrive, Outlook, and various automation software or CRMs.
The programs are considered “high bandwidth” apps because they use a lot of the available bandwidth your network offers. As the amount of data and content your team stores in these applications grows (both over time and whenever you expand your staff) your need for a bigger, stronger networks grows, too.
4) Security is Key, Regardless of Your Industry
Your business is valuable, and you need to operate on a trusted network that is secure. Why? Well, it isn’t just eCommerce companies who need to protect consumer information anymore. Business-to-business companies house tons of important contact information, product details, and other confidential data on those big applications we just talked about. All of this information can be considered sensitive and needs to be protected as such.
In many cases, if you are relying on an older WiFi network, you may not be up-to-date in terms of wireless security. If you have any concerns about your current network, click here to learn more.
5) Things Change
As showcased in the above points, the workplace is a lot different that it was even a few short years ago. Employees now have a need to be away from their desk like never before, and they have many devices that demand constant (and reliable) WiFi access. On top of that, hackers are becoming more sophisticated everyday, and if they can pinpoint an outdated wireless network, it instantly becomes a target for a cyber attack.
Consider how fast the workforce is changing right now - where is was just five or ten years ago. Now, imagine the technological advancements and the evolution of the workforce in another five years - is your company ready?