Posted by: on July 3, 2024 at 7:26 am

TAZ Networks staff

What is Network Management?

Table of Contents


As a small business owner, I’m sure you find yourself juggling many responsibilities – From managing operations to your IT infrastructure. One crucial aspect of your IT is network management. But what exactly is network management, and why is it essential for your business?

Because IT networks play such a critical role in business operations, communications and collaboration, superior network management is important in enabling an enterprise to operate smoothly, compete effectively and innovate with ease. – Spectrum Enterprise

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the ins and outs of network management, its key components, the benefits, and the challenges it presents. We will also discuss how to choose the right network management solution for your business.


Understanding Network Management

Network management is the process of administering, managing, and operating a data network using various tools and technologies. It involves making sure that the network is running efficiently, securely, and reliably, and that it meets the business’s needs. According to TechTarget, “A cornerstone of all computing is the ability to connect one machine, system or device to another — enabling what is known as a computer network. As a computer network grows from a handful of machines to hundreds or thousands of connected network devices, the network complexity also grows. The ability to effectively operate, monitor and control an entire network is the domain of network management.”

Key Components:

Effective network management encompasses several key components, each playing a vital role in maintaining its health and performance.

1. Administration

Network administration involves managing and maintaining network resources, such as servers, routers, switches, and other hardware. It includes tasks like assigning network addresses, configuring network devices, and managing user access. Proper network administration ensures that your network infrastructure is well-organized and functioning correctly.

For example, a network administrator might be responsible for creating user accounts and assigning them appropriate access levels to network resources. They would also be responsible for configuring network devices, such as routers and switches, to ensure optimal network performance and security.

2. Operation

Network operation is more focused on the day-to-day things that are required to keep your network running smoothly. This would include things like monitoring network performance, identifying and resolving issues, and making sure that the network services are available and reliable.

For example, network operations staff would use network monitoring tools to identify potential issues before they become major problems. They would also be responsible for troubleshooting  outages and restoring network services as quickly as possible.

A TAZ Network field consultant revamp a clients network

3. Maintenance

Maintenance involves regular tasks that preserve the network’s functionality and performance. This would include software updates, hardware replacements, and routine checks to prevent any issues. Consistent maintenance helps in avoiding unexpected failures and prolonging the life of your network components.

For instance, network maintenance might involve updating the firmware on network devices, patching software vulnerabilities, and performing regular backups of your data.

4. Provisioning

Provisioning is the process of setting up and configuring network resources to support new devices, applications, or users. It ensures all necessary resources are available and properly configured to meet your businesses demands. If you have efficient network provisioning, you can significantly reduce the time required to deploy new services or expand your network.

For instance, provisioning tasks might include adding new devices to the network, configuring network security settings for new users, and allocating bandwidth for new applications.


Benefits of Effective Network Management

When network management is working efficiently it is an essential aspect of your small business operations. It adds many benefits including:

Improved Performance

One of the primary benefits is improved performance. By continuously monitoring and optimizing your network, you can ensure that it operates at peak efficiency. Regular performance monitoring helps identify potential bottlenecks, allowing you to take proactive measures to prevent disruptions. Not only can this identify current issues, but it can also provide insight into trends and potential future problems. A proactive approach like this can lead to a more stability and efficiency in your network, which will reduce the risk of downtime and enhance productivity.

Enhanced Security

Network management plays a crucial role in the security of your IT infrastructure. It involves implementing security measures like firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and encryption protocols to protect your network from cyber threats. Regular monitoring and updates help to identify and mitigate security vulnerabilities. When you continuously analyze network traffic and behavior, you can detect unusual activities that may indicate breaches or attacks.

Furthermore, a well-managed network ensures that all security patches and updates are applied promptly, which reduces the risk of exploitation.

Cost Efficiency

Effective network management can also lead to significant cost savings. By optimizing network performance and preventing downtime, you can reduce the expenses associated with network issues and outages. Additionally, regular maintenance and updates can extend the lifespan of your network components, reducing the need for frequent replacements. All around it can save you money, which is something all small business owners need!


Challenges in Network Management

While network management offers numerous benefits, it also presents many challenges, particularly for SMBs with limited resources.

One of the main challenges is the complexity of modern networks. With the increasing adoption of cloud services, mobile devices, and the Internet of Things (IoT), managing a network has become more complex than ever. SMBs often struggle to keep up with the latest technologies and best practices.

Another challenge is the shortage of skilled IT professionals. According to a report by CompTIA, many small businesses are switching to using MSPs for their IT needs.


Choosing the Right Network Management Solution

Selecting the right solution is critical to ensure the efficiency and security of your network. Here are a few factors to consider:

  • Scalability: Ensure that the solution can scale with your business as it grows.
  • Ease of Use: Look for a solution with an intuitive interface and user-friendly features.
  • Security: Prioritize solutions that offer robust security features and regular updates.
  • Support: Choose a solution with reliable customer support and comprehensive documentation.
  • Cost: Consider the total cost of ownership, including upfront costs, maintenance, and potential savings.

The right network management solution can streamline operations, enhance security, and provide valuable insights into your network’s performance.



In conclusion, network management is a critical aspect of maintaining an efficient IT infrastructure for your SMB. By understanding its key components, benefits, and challenges, you can make informed decisions and implement effective strategies to ensure the optimal performance and security of your network.

Investing in the right solution can help you stay ahead of potential issues, reduce costs, and enhance the overall productivity of your business. As the digital world continues to change, staying proactive in managing your network is crucial for sustained growth and competitiveness.

For more information on network management and how TAZ Networks can help you, feel free to reach out to our team of experts. We are here to support your Southeast Michigan business and ensure that your IT infrastructure is always running at its best.


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