There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ business. From large healthcare organizations to colleges and universities to small, family-run businesses, the business market is broad and varied.  Network needs are similarly unique and demand solutions that can be custom designed to suit your company’s needs today as well as grow with your business tomorrow. Green_Check_Dots

FirstLight Fiber understands the unique needs of business customers and has compiled a simple checklist to begin the process of evaluating how robust your current network is and how well your existing provider is meeting your networking needs.

FirstLight’s Network Checklist

  • Do you have network performance guarantees? Look for measurable and guaranteed Quality of Service (QoS) levels, which are critical for managing both a single location’s LAN as well as multi-site or distributed networks (WANs).  Along with the stated metrics for key network performance indicators, are there penalties should your provider not meet those SLAs?
    Factors such as packet loss (data that doesn’t make it to your destination), latency (the amount of time it takes for a packet to travel through the network) and jitter [variation in packet arrival] are all things that can negatively impact your network’s performance and thus your ability to conduct business.
    As more enterprises embrace voice over IP (VoIP), video and “cloud” based software, QoS is as important as the amount of bandwidth available, and having your service provider contractually state the SLAs, and then meet them will be critical for your ongoing operations.
  •  Is your network poised to scale with your business? You should choose a provider that offers scalable data solutions so bandwidth demands can be readily adjusted to meet your organization’s specific needs and grow with you over time.
  •  Is your bandwidth dedicated to support your business? Is your bandwidth guaranteed and are your connections dedicated to your use?  Low cost solutions from providers such as your local cable company or phone company are often shared and oversubscribed, which ends up costing your business dearly in the form of decreased productivity and missed opportunities due to network congestion from other users’ traffic.
  • Does your Service Provider offer the solutions your organization requires? Your network provider should offer not only a wide range of high-quality solutions, but also the flexibility to customize and bundle a tailored solution to support your operations.
  • Does your Service Provider offer dedicated, proactive support? As with any sized business, time is money and you can’t afford downtime or technical issues. Your Service Provider should offer you direct access to knowledgeable and proactive support staff, available to you 24x7x365, that includes dedicated account managers familiar with your business, staff and network needs.
  • Does your network provider offer competitive pricing? The lowest price doesn’t necessarily result in a cost-effective solution.  Your provider should work with you to identify solutions that limit costs without sacrificing performance so your business can benefit from true efficiencies in this competitive marketplace.

Does your network measure up? Contact FirstLight today to obtain a no cost, no obligation network assessment and bill review.