A business’s network administrator can have different duties depending on the structure and size of an organization. Many smaller businesses rely on this individual to be the main “go-to person” for almost all IT related needs. While many network administrators certainly do have the ability to support users, their primary focus should be on maintaining a company’s computer network. This maintenance requires knowledge and a specific skillset, but perhaps equally as important, the time to perform proactive tasks to ensure that the network is running the way the business needs it to.
Are you concerned that your network administrator is not up to the task or is perhaps too overextended? Here is a key sign that your administrator may need to be upgraded to version 2.0:
Your network is running slowly, but no one knows why
The Issue: In many cases, it is very obvious that a network is moving slower than it is supposed to. But what does this “slowness” really mean? “People often complain of network slowness,” says Matt Haedo, IT Implementation Specialist at Miles Technologies. “Network administrators can do their best to have the users describe the slowness, but without gathering actual data it can be difficult to determine the cause of this slowness.”
Haedo says that common causes of slowness can include:
- DNS problems
- Bandwidth bottlenecks
- Overcommitted aging hardware
- Improperly designed network topology
“Rookie network admins will often randomly attempt ‘solutions’ without clearly defining the problems they are trying to solve,” Haedo says. “This is rarely an effective way to resolve network issues.”
The Solution: Proactive monitoring and properly gathered data of a network should make troubleshooting this issue much easier. These are key duties of a network admin that often get put by wayside if there is simply too much on his or her plate. This is an area where a company could benefit from having an experienced network administrator who has to just manage the network and not spend time supporting multiple users. A small business could also benefit from the expertise of an IT Managed Services Provider (MSP) that is dedicated to managing their network. “An IT MSP would have a structured approach to troubleshooting, the appropriate tools to gather the necessary data, and experienced people to analyze their topology and data they’ve gathered about their network,” Haedo says.
Are you a network administrator who can relate? Do you have any other questions? Let us know in the comments section.
Do you have questions about how your business’s network can be improved? Contact us and talk to a knowledgable IT advisor.