February 20, 2015

#ENTechTalk: What Network Analytics Insight is Most Valuable to Your CIO?


In this month’s #ENTechTalk, let’s discuss the latest network analytics trends in the industry.  We want to know your take on network analytics… What insights do you think are most valuable to a CIO?

The modern day CIO wields many hats in an organization. CIO’s responsibilities are growing as more niche technologies are released into the market. Network teams research, evaluate, test and implement various technologies, but hold only one direct report up to the CIO. Insightful reporting on network analytics has the potential to be the strongest tool in any CIO’s pocket when sitting at the business table. Network analytics holds broad meaning, so we want to dive into the specifics and learn what data, drawn from the network, is the most important for CIOs.

We want your feedback! Our poll contains five options that are outlined in more detail below, but we want to hear what you think.

The poll results will be revealed on March 17, 2015. Be sure to check back to see the final outcome!


Applications drive efficiencies for organizations across all industries. Insight into the adoption of organizational applications and the use of consumer applications is becoming increasingly important. The following topics highlight different areas where application analytics are needed:

  • Adoption rates: Rollouts of new organizational applications can be tricky; even though your team thinks the application is great does not mean the employees will adopt the new application. Tracking adoption rates of new applications is common when evaluating success of a rollout.
  • Malicious applications: As the number of malicious applications on devices is rising, the likelihood of those applications to be used on your network rises. Sniffing out the severe threat of malicious apps on the network is gaining importance.
  • Unauthorized application use: “Shadow/Stealth IT” is a perfect example of unauthorized applications on a network.  Regardless if the network team rolled out a solution or application, they are responsible for the security and compliance. Insight into what unauthorized apps are on the network is critical. Aside from organizational applications, consumer applications are often abundant on a network. When a student is accessing (and able to use) apps such as Facebook during class, or when a clinician accesses their personal email on the hospital’s employee network environment.

Network Access

Knowing who, and what, is accessing the network is becoming more difficult as consumer technology continues to grow exponentially. Mobile devices and wearables demanding ubiquitous access are marching into networks everywhere. Insight on network access holds massive importance:

  • The “who, what, when, and where”: Understanding who is accessing the network is imperative. Not only who, but what device is being used as well (smart phone, tablet, etc.). Having a network access timeline report can indicate who, what and when the devices were accessing the network. A network topology map and effective traffic monitoring should pinpoint locations of where they are accessing the network.
  • Authorized vs. rogue devices: Rogue devices can wreak havoc on a network. Whether they are rogue AP’s or computer-based rogue threats, the security risk that accompanies these devices can threaten any organization.

Network performance

All aspects of network performance are insightful if teams can harness the vast data and analytics on:

  • Network availability/accessibility for end users: This is inclusive of uptime vs. downtime and building/campus coverage.
  • Bandwidth/Latency: Visibility into the networks capacity or throughput, consumption rates, and any bottlenecks on the network.
  • Network vs. Applications: Being able to answer the question, “is it the network or is it the application that isn’t performing?”

Quantifiable Measurement of User Experience

User experience is a great indicator of meeting and exceeding expectations – or not. IT teams may base the network’s user experience on these measurements:

  • Help desk tickets:  In a perfect world, the lower the help desk tickets, the better the user experience is. However, many variables will contribute to the sheer number of help desk tickets, so other measurable factors, such as resolve rates, are effective to monitor as well.
  • Measuring the “who, what, when and where”: Diagnosing an issue through the help desk can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Knowing if the issue lies in the device, the app it’s running, the app response time, the network response time, etc. makes a big difference. Quantifiably measuring all of those factors tells the complete story of the actual user experience.


If you think we missed anything or have any other major insights that you see as most valuable to a CIO, select other so we know!

Stay tuned for next month’s #ENTechTalk poll and follow us on twitter for the latest updates.

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Extreme Marketing Team

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