Why businesses work best in the cloud

Businesses today want exceptional experiences so its time to break up complexity and start a fresh with a cloud-managed network. Cloud-first networks change everything as they deliver dynamic, business-boosting experiences that move your organisation forward faster. A cloud-managed network will help your business improve efficiency, cost management and agility. It will give your business speed of deliver and the ability to change quickly and improve performance. A cloud platform is always on, always learning and always ready for what’s next.

Want to know why businesses work best in the cloud and what a cloud-first network looks like, or how you can start transitioning your own network? It all starts with a platform-based approach. We are Cisco Premier Integrator Partners who help our customers unify their IT and IoT experiences. We design, configure and install Meraki solutions that scale easily, automate operations, connect multiple domains securely, and enable an open ecosystem of partnerships.

Cloud-based networking

Businesses who adopt a cloud-first network strategy thrive. Older networks with full-stack on-premises technologies have become too rigid and expensive to keep up with the pace of today’s businesses. A cloud-first network changes everything. Your business can gain important advantages such as enhanced reliability, security, automation, remote management, multi-site visibility, and dynamic scalability. All of these work together to grow your business when and where you need it—without the high costs of private connectivity, or maintaining your own data centre. A cloud-first network gives you the flexibility to meet your customers’ needs now and quickly shift as their needs change, ensuring the best possible experience for them and your employees, no matter how business changes in the future.

The first thing you’ll notice about the Meraki platform is its sheer scale. Whether you have one office location or several, Meraki enables you to transition your network over time to suit your business. And no matter what you throw at it, the Meraki platform can handle it. Start by migrating one location and you’ll immediately realise just how easy it is. Unbox and plug in the IoT or network device and the Meraki platform will have your infrastructure up and running in minutes.

Need to deploy on a large scale?

The Meraki platform enables you to deploy tens of thousands of networks quickly through automation and simple configuration, accelerating your strategic business goals. Once your network is up, the Meraki platform can auto-scale to meet whatever traffic demands you have and provide the enterprise-grade capabilities you have come to rely on. That means that as you get used to the benefits of our cloud-first network, Meraki grows with you. Each location can have a unique configuration to meet the needs of your employees and customers while also meeting your corporate standards. And the Meraki platform will automatically absorb it into your overall cloud first network topology.

As your current networks have grown in scale and complexity, so have the challenges facing your network operations team. For even the most sophisticated teams, trying to identify, isolate, and remediate issues affecting network performance can be challenging. To counter this issue, Meraki uses machine learning (ML) to transform billions of data points across our entire cloud platform into meaningful insights and trusted recommendations. Our data lake—the largest networking dataset in the industry—aggregates all of this anonymised telemetry and feeds it through our machine-learning pipelines to generate the insights to keep your networks running optimally. One of the great benefits of Meraki’s machine learning is its ability to learn from situations your staff may not have thought of when deploying your new cloud network. Machine learning allows the network to learn as it manages traffic, giving you the ability to update policies as you go based on what the system is learning. This enables Meraki to provide powerful assurance capabilities for your wireless and wired networks, as well as WAN application health.

Enhance reliability and security

One of the most-asked questions about why businesses work best in the cloud and cloud-networking revolves around reliability and security. The Meraki platform has the highest reliability in the industry and a proven track record with multiple ways to keep your data secure. Part of what makes Meraki so reliable is its highly available redundant configuration. Data is replicated across multiple independent data centres, and there are nightly archival backups of your network configuration and statistical data. Meraki also provides 24/7 automated failover protection, which means customer-facing services failover quickly in the rare event an outage does occur. A power outage or natural disaster could strike at any time, but that doesn’t mean your customers need to suffer. The Meraki platform uses an out-of-band architecture to preserve network functionality for your employees and customers, even if connectivity to Meraki cloud services is interrupted. Once the connection to the cloud is re-established, the Meraki platform automatically updates the devices at the affected location—with minimal strain on your IT staff.

Meraki keeps your data segregated from other users and provides granular access control for the different networks and IoT devices in your environment, and we maintain some of the most stringent security and compliance standards in the world, including PCI DSS, ISO 27001, and SOC 2 Type II. Configuration data is encrypted in transit and at rest in the cloud, preventing unwanted changes and potential snooping. Meraki also has 24/7 automated intrusion protection, IP- and port-based firewalls, two factor authentication, and can restrict remote access by IP address and verify it by public key (RSA). Clearly, the Meraki platform can scale and innovate while enhancing network reliability and security. All of this helps amplify the effectiveness of your distributed teams – enabling your staff to do more in less time.

Ease of Operation

The user interface (UI) to the Meraki platform happens with our dashboard, which continues to set the industry standard for simplicity. It starts with an organisational view where you can see the overall health and performance of each network on a single page. This lets you quickly see any urgent issues that may need to be addressed or if similar issues are happening across multiple networks—a clear sign of a larger issue. From here, you can drill down as far as you want to go to get the information you need for true end-to-end visibility.

Want to see the configuration of switches at a certain location? The dashboard shows you the information graphically and allows you to replicate the configuration for a new location. Need to access analytics from a specific camera? The dashboard makes it easy to digest and understand. What about the performance of a WiFi access point at a certain location? The dashboard has that information too. Visibility within the dashboard allows you to view exactly where a client device is currently connected, whether to an access point, switch, security appliance, or even spanning outside your corporate network.

It’s also possible to view how the network components themselves are interconnected. The network topology view automatically maps network architectures, showing how Meraki security, switching, wireless, communication, and video surveillance devices are connected. Beyond individual client devices, the dashboard allows you to view macro trends, such as how applications are performing across your network and change settings to prioritise certain applications over others. For example, you can set policies that give priority to WebEx video traffic over email. You can also see how much bandwidth is being consumed over the entire network for a productive user experience (UX). The Meraki platform enables you to automate with APIs, customise with apps and deploy at your own pace, so its perfect for SMB’s as well as large organisations.

So if you want your business to work best in the cloud, contact us today.