Attracting Mobile Workers With Strong Wi-Fi Connectivity

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Do you want to ensure strong Wi-Fi connectivity in your business center? Motorola is offering some tips to help you do that and more.

With Wi-Fi becoming increasingly important to mobile workers, it’s vital that your business center help them get connected – and keep connected. Poor or insecure Wi-Fi is not an option if you hope to attract mobile workers to your business center.

Although security is top of mind, Motorola suggest that nothing is more important than making sure your network runs. The handset maker suggests asking two questions about your Wi-Fi network: “Is it reliable?” and “How can I make sure it’s ALWAYS reliable”?

Ensuring reliability means planning for expected changes
Motorola says it should go without saying that a reliable wireless LAN depends on smart planning and preemptive troubleshooting on the part of the IT manager – i.e. designing the network based on the specific needs of the company.

“Implementing a WLAN without conducting a thorough site survey, only to find that it does not reliably serve your employees, makes about as much sense as purchasing a Volkswagen Bug on a whim, only to find that it does not reliably transport a family of eight,” Motorola says. “Such an approach creates coverage, bandwidth and other reliability issues.”

Ask yourself who will be using the network, when they will be using it, what apps the network will serve, which workspaces will require wireless LAN coverage, who will be running the network, what are the likely security challenges, what it’s going to cost if it’s not working, and what obstacles might interfere with Wi-Fi radio signals.

Ensuring reliability means planning for “unexpected challenges”
Of course, Motorola said, the best-laid plans will go awry if they don’t account for unforeseen obstructions and changes in employee behavior. According to Motorola, chances are that your business is a dynamic, ever-changing environment – or it wouldn’t need a wireless network in the first place.

To that end, the company said, a reliable wireless network requires the ability to dynamically adjust to radio frequency issues such as: radio interference from new networks or microwave ovens; sudden changes in usage patterns; ever-changing cubicle patterns; and sudden changes in inventory, equipment or customer behavior that leads to RF interference.

Ensuring reliability means ensuring wireless network security
According to Motorola, a reliable wireless network requires superior encryption mechanisms; 24X7 intrusion detection and protection at both the edge and core of the network; a centralized management and troubleshooting; consistent policies for network clients; audit logging of all network activity; and a firewall that detects all wired/wireless activity.

Ensuring reliability means planning for future technologies
In order to stay competitive and ensure the highest possible level of performance, Motorola says companies generally want to stay current with Wi-Fi standards, and to expand the network to include other wireless technologies when necessary.

Moto offers an example: a company might upgrade from an 802.11b/g network to an 802.11n network because the latter promises faster data throughput rates and QoS for voice and video over an adaptive mesh network. The company might also want to add support for RFID, RTLS (real-time location system), 3G, WiMax, not to mention wireless technologies that have yet to hit the market.

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“Companies also want to stay current with security mechanisms and software updates for the wireless LAN, both at headquarters and in remote offices,” Motorola says. “To that end, companies need to make sure that their wireless LAN is relatively simple to upgrade and update, and that they can make positive changes to the network with a minimum of downtime.”

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