What is Network Monitoring – and Why is it So Important?

Importance of Network Monitoring

Even if you’re a non-IT orientated professional, you’ve probably heard the term “network monitoring” before.

It may have been in passing with an IT guy or you read it in a magazine somewhere.

And while your knowledge probably doesn’t extend much further than simply knowing that it is “a thing that exists” – trust us when we say, it is very important, perhaps even crucial, to the healthy functioning of your organisation.

So, to help you brush up on your IT knowledge, and to speak a little more authoritatively on the subject in the future, we’ve put together this one-stop-shop article all about it.

You’re welcome.

Understanding Network Monitoring

So, what is network monitoring?

Imagine your business as a bustling city – its’ own mini economy if you will.

Importance of Network Monitoring

You’ve got hundreds of thousands (maybe millions) of different individuals running around delivering packages of information via the highways, bridges and subways of your eco-system. Each package delivered enables a further package to be put together which is then delivered somewhere else – and so on and such forth etc

Now in a city environment, the efficient workflow of the system is heavily reliant on smooth and uninterruptible transit for every little courier doing their bit. If a busy intersection gets jammed (caused by a car crash or light system failure for example) then the economy is slowed down considerably, maybe even brought to a standstill.

In the real world, traffic control systems are in place to help negate this problem. Traffic lights, cameras, and sensors keep an eye on road conditions, flow, and the build up of potential incidents. If an incident occurs (or is on the verge of occurring), failover systems are brought online or individuals are dispatched to fix the issue and manage it until normal service can be resumed and traffic can flow smoothly again.

This is essentially what network monitoring tools are – but for your business IT infrastructure.

We are now so reliant on IT for the functioning of our organisations, that losing even one small part of system can effectively render us useless. Router failure, server crash, hardware breakage, malware attack – anyone of these incidents can break the chain – but whatever it is, it can quickly kill your ability to be a productive and functioning organization.

Network monitoring’s role in the puzzle is to watch out for breakages (or potential breakages) in the system and negate them as soon as possible.

In our imaginary city, traffic controllers respond to accidents, roadblocks, and congestion to keep traffic flowing; in the IT world, that’s what engineers like Rapid IT do. Your first responders to keep business on the move.

The Nuts and Bolts

So that’s networking in a nutshell. Hope you enjoyed the read.

What’s that? You what more detail?

Oh, alright then.

You probably want to know what Network Monitoring actually involves day-to-day right?

This can be broadly categorized as thus:

1. Data Collection

The bread and butter of network monitoring is the continual analysis of data flow in your organisation. The collection of this data helps identify trends, peak usage times, and potential bottlenecks that are unique to your operations.

Network monitoring software will gather data on various performance indicators such as bandwidth usage (what is and isn’t normal), latency, packet loss, and error rates amongst the various IT assets in your overall system – basically building a picture of what is ’normal’ for your company.

2. Health and Performance Checks

Another thing network monitoring will do is continually check on the status of your devices. These are your routers, switches, servers, terminals, desktops, laptops etc. to ensure they are all functioning correctly and as expected.

This means monitoring individual CPUs, memory load, and storage usage to identify whether any of these critical components are being overutilized – which could impact network performance and therefore the efficient functioning of the business if they were compromised.

Network Monitoring Services Boca Raton

3. Infrastructure Fault Identification and Alerts

This is where Network Monitoring software really earns its’ salt.

If the system identifies an error, malfunction or abnormal activity in your network infrastructure (compromised hardware, unplugged routers, overloaded servers etc), it will send an automatic alert to the administrators of the network (in our case – Rapid IT engineers).

They will receive this notification and immediately start looking into the issue – hopefully catching it before it causes any significant disruption to your daily activities. It could result in our team springing into action to replace a key piece of hardware, re-route some cabling, update software etc.

4. CyberSecurity Monitoring

In the same way Network Monitoring identifies problems with your physical infrastructure and hardware, it also acts as an omnipresent shield against cyber threats too.

Intrusion detection systems are built in that continuously monitor for signs of unauthorized access or malicious attacks on the network.

And as well as virus scanning, good network monitoring software will also actively look for existing or newly appeared vulnerabilities in your system that could, one day, be exploited by attackers. This goes a long way to closing the door to potential threats before they have a chance to latch on and embed themselves nefariously.

5. Configuration and Maintenance

Now a large part of the value provided by managed IT providers like Rapid IT – when it comes to network monitoring – is associated with “configuration management”.

Sounds boring doesn’t it, but it is actually a crucial part of operational restoration after issues have occurred.

Keeping a record of network device configurations and previous changes will help diagnose issues in the future and potentially restore service faster should similar situations happen again. A Rapid IT engineer will keep tabs on this for you.

Coupled with configuration management is general software maintenance. Good network monitoring will automatically monitor, review and apply necessary software updates and patches to system network devices to ensure security and performance.

6. Reporting and Analytics

Lastly, but not least. Network monitoring provides significant value in the way it forecasts network performance over time to identify future trends and areas for improvement in your business.

A good managed IT service partner will regularly sit down with you to review the performance health of your network and discuss any further plans you may have.

This can be related to the way you plan to grow or scale the business and the tools and resources you will need to do that most efficiently.

Everything Together, All At Once

The network monitoring processes described above all work together to provide a comprehensive overview of your network’s health, performance, and security.

And as you can probably imagine, it is a continually evolving job.

Effective network monitoring requires a combination of sophisticated tools, skilled personnel, and efficient workflows to ensure that everything runs as smoothly as possible for now and into the future.

It is all about minimizing downtime when issues arise – because despite all the best intentions and contingencies in the world – eventually you will face challenges.

But with a responsible attitude to the discipline of Network Monitoring and security, you will be better placed than 99% of other businesses who will be left high and dry when the unexpected happens.

Network Server Management

To Sum Up Then

So, there you have it. You now know that network monitoring is your IT network’s guardian angel, keeping an ever watchful eye on things with allows you to focus on what you do best – running your business.

If you’re currently looking to assess your own business network or explore advanced monitoring solutions, now’s the time. Rapid IT is offering a free network audit worth $2500 to businesses in the Boca Raton, Ft Lauderdale and West Palm Beach area.

Just complete our request form below and a Rapid IT engineer will be in touch to help you get started with the process.


Just fill in the form below and one of our engineers will be in touch. We’ll arrange a good time to talk and get your IT systems in shape.