How to Choose a Managed Network Service Provider

January 12, 2017 mrmardis

How to Choose a Managed Network Service Provider
Melissa Coen
Thursday, January 12, 2017 - 12:15 Choosing a Managed Network Service Provider

Choosing a managed network service provider is a pivotal decision for any business. Make sure you know what you need and what you should be looking for. 

The functionality of an enterprise network provides the backbone for almost any daily business operation. As a result, organizations must carefully evaluate how to go about handling the network's day-to-day management and operations. The decision to move to a managed network service provider may come about as onsite equipment continues to age or when mergers, acquisitions, or other changes result in a disparate network environment that needs to be rationalized. But in order to select the best fit for your organization, there are several factors to consider when choosing a managed network service provider.

Does the Provider Offer a Customized Solution for Your Network?

Like people, companies want to feel understood. So it would seem obvious that before choosing a managed network service provider, you would want that provider to perform an in-depth analysis of your network needs. The best network service provider for your business is one that can create a customized solution for your enterprise, extending the life of on-premises equipment where logical while also taking advantage of the cost-savings, flexibility and functionality available with a fully-managed cloud-based network solution.

Does the Provider have Fully-Managed Network Capabilities?

The selected managed network service provider should be able to provide a network with fast speeds, excellent Quality of Service (QoS) and a reliable and geographically-diverse infrastructure to ensure ongoing business continuity. And network features should be varied and possess the ability to be packaged in a variety of ways that best suit the functional needs of the company.

Maxxis is a converged, all-IP network package that can be deployed as a fully-managed infrastructure. It delivers unprecedented application performance, flexibility, and resiliency. Maxxis performs as a cloud-based network optimized for real-time communications, centralized applications and cloud-based services across the enterprise. With Maxxis, you get wide geographic coverage across a multitude of Tier 1 carriers, and unparalleled resiliency, backed by a Cisco-certified Network Operations Center (NOC).

How Maxxis Allows West to Truly Unify Communications

Does the Provider Offer Complete Network Monitoring and Management Tools?

When selecting a service provider to manage your network, businesses need to look at the way in which monitoring and management is executed. Companies should check to see whether the prospective service provider can offer proactive management of network connectivity and equipment, 100 percent of the time. They should also review how notifications can be received, how potential issues are managed and resolved and they should evaluate ease of use of the network management and monitoring tools available.

One solution is Network Monitor - a complete WAN management solution providing tools to easily manage hardware, circuits and Virtual Local Area Networks (VLANs). It works with Maxxis to provide a comprehensive solution for managing business applications end-to-end and in real-time. Network Monitor maximizes all aspects of network performance, utilizing efficient technology to deliver monitoring, metrics and controls that optimize communications performance across the enterprise.

How Maxxis Network Monitoring Works

Does the Provider Offer Comprehensive Support and Service Level Agreements (SLAs)?

When receiving support for any product or service, individuals and companies want to ensure they will receive timely service from product experts. So ideally, managed network service support should provide certified technology experts at the top of their field, as well as ongoing upgrades and training. Through West, all solutions are supported by our voice and network operations center, staffed 24/7/365 by Cisco-certified technicians, ensuring swift, complete, issue resolution.

Service Level Agreements (SLAs) are an important measure of the commitment a provider is willing to make to ensure your network always stays up and running. High availability and a consistent level of network performance are key factors in deciding who will be your managed network service provider partner. SLAs are a promise from the service provider to guarantee a certain level of uptime, responsiveness and resolutions in the event of any network interruptions. Look for companies with a good industry track record that have continually met their customer SLAs.

How Dependable is the Network Security?

The days of the singularly functioning anti-virus software have long past. Networks now need to be protected against same-day threats, ransomware, malware and more. That means your network security solution must be able to block whatever might try to get in next. So you’ll want to stay a step ahead with a network service provider that can provide a cloud-based unified threat management (UTM) solution that’s also fully-managed.

West’s MaxxSecure helps to protect networks from spam and viruses, intrusions, and inappropriate web content while providing simplicity and consistency of security policy management. MaxxSecure ensures a secure network, serving to eliminate single-points-of-failure and bottlenecks that are common with premises–based security solutions. Since MaxxSecure is a fully-managed solution, network security experts are accessible 24/7/365 for configuration changes and ongoing management.

How MaxxSecure Protects Your Network

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