March 17, 2023
5 Stages of a CDW Network Monitoring Engagement
By working with CDW’s managed services team, organizations can offload network monitoring and turn their attention to strategic projects.
When an IT network shuts down, business shuts down. Yet many organizations lack effective tools and strategies to monitor their networks for performance and security.
Through network monitoring services, CDW can help organizations identify and mitigate issues with their networks, create tailored monitoring and support plans, provide 24/7 monitoring, and adjust services as a business evolves. A typical network monitoring engagement includes these five stages:
To be effective, a network services team needs to walk into a stable, functional networking environment. The first step in making sure that happens is a network assessment, during which CDW’s professional services team will identify vulnerabilities, single points of failure and other areas of concern, and get a solid understanding of the organization’s specific needs and goals.
Once a network assessment is complete, CDW will design a monitoring solution that is tailored to the organization’s needs. This design process will include selecting the appropriate monitoring tools and configuring the monitoring environment. Some tools will largely be the same across customers.
For instance, CDW generally uses the SL1 platform by ScienceLogic for monitoring and ServiceNow for IT service management. However, additional software and infrastructure may be incorporated into the design, depending on the customer’s environment and needs. At this stage, CDW’s solution architects will suggest any tools needed to improve resiliency and redundancy in the network.
This phase includes installing and configuring the monitoring software, integrating it with the organization’s existing network infrastructure and optimizing solutions to make sure they are meeting the customer’s needs. During the initial implementation of a network monitoring solution, CDW engages customers in an extensive quality assurance period.
During this time, we closely analyze the alerts from the monitoring solutions and work with customers to make sure the tools are performing as expected. We often need to do some fine-tuning to ensure that alerts are pointing to real performance and security issues that must be addressed rather than to the benign “noise” generated by a customer’s environment.
Once a monitoring solution is in place, our professionals keep an eye on customers’ networks around the clock from one of our network operations centers, constantly watching for potential issues. This includes monitoring for security threats, performance issues and other problems.
Depending on the nature and severity of the problem, network professionals may begin tackling these issues immediately, sometimes solving them before they even pop up on a customer’s radar. In other instances, CDW will work in tandem with customers to resolve networking problems. CDW also provides customers with regular reports to help them understand the health and performance of the network and to identify any areas that might need attention.
5. Maintenance and Support
Networks evolve over time, and network monitoring solutions must evolve with them. Some customers have worked with us to monitor their environments for 15 years or longer.
We strive to constantly tweak and customize solutions to better sniff out real networking issues while ignoring the sorts of blips that cause false alarms. As a result, the service that customers receive typically improves over time.
Len Goebel, a Client Executive with Sirius Computer Solutions, a CDW company.
Justin Haase, the Director of Managed Services at Sirius Computer Solutions, a CDW company.
Michael Smith, a sales specialist for CDW.