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Steps to Optimizing Your Network- Change Management & Network Management Strategies

AL79165(1)Having completed all of the previous strategy elements, you are ready to deploy.  Is that all there is to it? Not quite.  In this post, I’ll highlight strategies you can use for a smooth post-deployment.

Change Management

In one of my past experiences, deployment of our branch routers went off without a hitch and we patted ourselves on the back and went home.  In the morning, operations noted a reload on two of the routers we had upgraded the night before.  It appeared that one of the defects we evaluated had not discovered “all” of the traffic that could force the reload. So what was the impact of all this? As part of our change management strategy, we were certain to ensure that we could back out on our changes.  Additionally, we set the device to load the old software and configuration if the device reloaded.  This resulted in less than a minute outage for those devices that did reload and the design allowed for seamless failover between the two switches.  Failure to do so would have resulted in the router continuously reloading as these packets were encountered -, which would unlikely be noticed. It is important to note that there was no impact on the production network or business services. Read More »

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Five Keys to a Successful Meeting with your Channel Partner

The best way to prepare for a meeting with your channel partner depends, in large part, on how long you have been working together. We’re going to look at five key points, assuming that you and the partner are starting from Square One. If you’ve been working with the same partner for a considerable period of time, you may already have done some of these. But be on the lookout for anything you might have missed.

#1: Look at your IT needs from a business perspective, as well as a technological perspective.

This is not as basic as it might sound. What are the pain points of your company? Where are your costs just a little too high? What types of functions are slipping through the cracks? As you can surmise, the true potential of technology runs much deeper than the basics around email, Internet access and whatever applications you currently may be using. Your partner may have some ideas for new software that can remove extra cycles or help your people more effectively track functions that somehow get lost in the shuffle.

#2: Provide an accurate accounting of the systems and software already in place.

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