Planning Your Systems Upgrade

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One would think a company will only require the services of Central Communications in certain instances, and they could be right, OR they could be wrong. There are all different sets of circumstances where our company can be of assistance to the companies who hire us. 

In fact, I can think of one instance that might sound unusual to you. Systems upgrades. Quite simply, upgrading your IT to new software and hardware can cause havoc within your worplace for days, sometimes even weeks. Getting a little backup assistance from Central Comm, can be a huge relief. In fact there are customers who go through the procedures for handling their customers with us ahead of any system disrupture at their company.

It’s finally here.  Your business has outgrown your current computer systems. Now’s time to upgrade your entire office and network. Just remember that proper planning, communication, and training can help ensure a successful network upgrade.

Notify end users

Communication with end users is a key component for the success of a network upgrade. Because the network affects everyone, targeted communications must detail the impact of the upgrade. Understanding how end users access and leverage the network for their specific job role is important when explaining how an upgrade will impact their duties both during the maintenance window  and after the upgrade is complete.

Integrate security into the upgrade process

When planning and implementing the upgrade, make sure that security is integrated into the entire process. It’s often tempting to forego security measures just to get something up and running.

Determine a rollout strategy

A rollout strategy should finely balance the speed of deployment with the risk of making mistakes that bring down the network. Your goal should be to find the optimal comfort level for the organization such that the upgrade can be performed in a reasonable amount of time without taking any major risks.

Have a back-out strategy

Just as the rollout plan is critically important, so too is a back-out strategy. Spend just as much time figuring out a back-out strategy as you do an implementation strategy. Even though you might not ever need it, you’ll be very happy you spent the time and effort in the event you do.

Train support staff

The same people who design, architect, and deploy the new network upgrade may not be the same people supporting it once it goes into production. This is especially true if you work for a large organization or hire outside consultants to handle the upgrade. Proper training is critical to the care and maintenance of a network upgrade from day one and beyond.

Document, document, document!

The step that is most often skipped over – yet is absolutely critical to the success of a network — is to thoroughly document the upgrade, how the new technology works, and how to maintain it once it’s in production. Documentation should also be reviewed and updated on a regular basis. A network upgrade that includes detailed documentation is far more likely to be considered successful when support staffers have information they can refer to for help.

Don’t forget to let us know ahead of time so we can help to keep things going as smoothly as possible for you at what could e a very hectic time.

Central Communications is here to help!


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