Remote Monitoring – What is it and how does it work?

Managed IT Services

Introduction

On face value remote monitoring and management may appear as just another IT buzzword. However, digging a bit deeper, remote monitoring is an integral component of IT service delivery that can bring widespread positive outcomes to your business.

The most obvious benefit for your business is that you will see fewer reoccurring IT issues, which means less calls to the help desk, and less downtime overall. This is because with an effective remote monitoring strategy for your business, your IT just works.

In this blog we outline what remote monitoring is and how it can benefit your business.

What is remote monitoring and management?

Also known as network management, remote monitoring is a practice that allows for the remote monitoring of servers and IT infrastructure. This software helps your IT service provider manage your entire IT systems remotely and most importantly – move from being reactive to proactively with the service they are providing for your business.

What it means for your business and your IT service provider

Remote monitoring allows for your IT service provider to have access and control of your entire IT system without needing to be on site.

Some of the tasks your IT service provider can complete remotely include:

  • Install new or update software
  • Detect and configure new devices
  • Monitor device behaviour
  • Performance diagnostic tasks
  • Collect data for reporting

Without the use of remote monitoring the above tasks would have to be done on-site.

Remote monitoring and management basics

A key reason remote monitoring and management is important for your business is that it can improve business efficiency. Your IT company can work with you to develop a solid remote management strategy, working to reduce tech down time and improve efficiencies in key areas of your business.

Having your IT company manage the entirety of your IT system increases efficiency, saves time, and improves productivity for your team.

How do remote monitoring systems work?

Applications are used throughout your IT system to provide your service provider with insights into your IT environment. These applications not only provide information on the overall health of your network, but they also allow for technicians to remotely control connected devices and other components of the system.

Benefits of remote monitoring and management

Remote monitoring is a vital tool for modern managed IT service providers. IT providers are more productive which results in a higher level of service for their clients. By monitoring the overall health of your network, your IT company can proactively address any minor issues before they become major problems.

We have already touched on some benefits of remote monitoring, read on for a break down how these benefits can help your business grow and succeed.

Efficient network infrastructure control

An effective network management strategy ensures the deployment, maintenance, and security of your IT infrastructure. Your IT service provider can maintain the security of your entire IT system and if any security vulnerabilities are identified, they simply follow the process to address the vulnerability.

Monitoring and alerts

One of the biggest IT headaches you can experience as a business owner is when employees have technical issues that can’t be resolved without the assistance of an IT technician. This time all added up can result in hours of downtime and lost productivity – the headache worsened when the same issues are happening to multiple employees at once!

The best way to solve a tech issue is to stop it from happening in the first place.

If your service provider is effectively monitoring your network and devices, and any warning signs are found, or an issue occurs – your IT provider will receive an alert. From here the technician can closely monitor the issue, take remote control, and fix the issue before it becomes a major problem.

This can all happen in the background, completely unnoticed by your employees and with zero downtime!

Automation

Many people put off maintaining their devices and software because it takes time out of their day. Employees might mute notifications to update their device and keep pushing the notification further and further away until they postpone the update indefinitely. With remote monitoring these menial tasks can be entirely automated. This frees up both your team’s time and the time of your service provider.

Patches

Similar to what we discussed above, patches can also be automated with the use of remote monitoring and management.

When software needs to be fixed or has a feature added, the software supplier will release a patch to update the software to the latest version. A patch management function as part of a remote monitoring service allows for your software to be automatically updated or ‘patched’ as soon as the latest version is available.

A common reason for a patch to be released is to fix security vulnerabilities found within the software. This means ensuring all software used in your IT system is up to date is vital in maintaining the security of your IT Infrastructure.

Analytics and reporting

With remote monitoring your IT service provider can do more than just monitor tasks and software updates. Effective remote monitoring also collects data from all the processes completed and generates a report.

These reports can be used by your IT team to monitor the overall health of your IT system and make larger recommendation about how to improve the system as a whole. This is another way an IT service provider can move from a reactive model of delivery to a proactive approach.

From reactive to proactive

Traditionally, IT service providers would travel from location to location to diagnose problems with their client’s IT systems. The problem would be fixed, and the IT provider would be paid for fixing the issue. This approach to IT service delivery is based on being reactive – only fixing something when its broken.

With the widespread uptake of remote monitoring, IT companies have been able to transition to a proactive approach. As outlined above, IT specialists can remotely monitor their clients’ systems, making improvements and fixing minor issues before they become major problems that cause stress.

The role of a Managed IT Service provider has moved from just fixing IT when it breaks to becoming an integral part of your business’ efficiency, growth, and success.

Beyond remote monitoring

The truth about Remote Monitoring and Management is that it should be implemented by all managed IT service providers. At the end of the day, remote monitoring is just a tool used by IT specialist, like any tool, the true benefit comes from how it is used, not the tool itself. Any IT company can implement remote monitoring, but the real benefit for your business will be seen in the way your IT company has setup the standard configurations, alerts, and how often your entire IT environment is reviewed.

After all, something that is best practice today can be out of date in 2 months, this is why continuous review and alignment is needed.

What a pro managed service looks like

When your IT environment is as close to the best practice standard as possible, the less overall issues you will encounter and the better prepared your IT team will be if there is an incident that needs to be addressed.

In addition, your IT company can setup advanced security monitoring tools that use artificial intelligence to assess a threat, then raise the alarm to a 24×7 Security Operations team member to actively remediate the issue.

The best managed IT service providers look to provide a technology success management service, which is in a league of its own when compared to simply using remote monitoring to fix and manage IT issues.

Conclusion

Remote monitoring is more than just an IT buzzword, it is an integral part of delivering effective managed IT services for businesses. The most significant benefit of remote monitoring is that it allows for a shift in the way in which IT services are delivered – from reactive to proactive.

At the end of the day any IT company can use remote monitoring, the true value for your business comes from the way in which your IT company uses it.

Is your current IT service providing a technology success management service? If not, then maybe it is time to consider a switch.

Learn more about our Managed IT Services

Do you need a reliable IT service?

Enquire through the form to get started with your business IT solution. 

Free Network and Cyber Security Assessment

Book a Free 30-Minute Call to Identify Your Security Problem