Based on results from Ihiji dealers, those with remote managed services offering have reduced the number of truck rolls to client sites to resolve network-related issues by more than 50%.
Remote Managed Network Services for Integrators
Steve Muccini | Ihiji
At Ihiji (eye-hee-jee), we understand that remote network management, as a service might be a new concept to many integrators out there. The good news? There are a myriad of business-use cases, blogs and articles that provide validation and support, and with Ihiji’s help, integrators can be well on their way to making these services an integral part of their business. The real winner here is the homeowner who is able to enjoy an optimized and uninterrupted technology experience any hour of the day. Read on to learn more about this burgeoning category.
How do Remote Managed Services work? What’s involved?
It’s simple. For each client project, install an Ihiji appliance and subscribe to a monthly service fee and it will help you to optimize the performance and stability of the homeowner’s network and IP enabled devices which are connected to it. The integrator delivering the service would be required to install an Ihiji appliance on client networks and set up the devices they wish to monitor. No private data is captured whatsoever, only the status of each individual device inside of the client site. When there is trouble, the integrator is often notified before the client and able to troubleshoot, diagnose and resolve most of the issues that might disrupt the client’s technology uptime.
Why is it important for integrators to offer Remote Managed Services?
Remote managed services will soon be a necessity for homeowners as so many new high and low technology IP-enabled devices continue to be added to home networks. Some of these devices demand high bandwidth, other devices are new to network connectivity, and all can potentially cause issues. Having an integrator monitor the network and status of their connected devices will help homeowners maintain the highest level of service on their network as well as all of their computing, entertainment, security and automation devices connected to it. When using remote managed services, quite often the integrator can proactively handle these issues, without the homeowner even needing to address the issue by making a phone call. As the Internet of Things (IoT) economy continues to expand, this new service offering will give integrators a platform to rely upon to deliver the most optimized and reliable technology experience to their clients.
A higher-level “white-glove” service can also be offered based upon the Ihiji platform. For this level of service, for instance, clients can be informed whenever a projector’s bulb is about to fail so that a new bulb can be installed before any downtime occurs. Because Ihiji Invision remote network management solutions deliver an inventory of every single IP-enabled device inside each client site, systems integrators are able to see and affect almost any activity on a given network. This provides incredible visibility and insight, but also offers integrators an opportunity to expand their service offering to include additional technologies. An example of this would be peripheral office equipment. Within Ihiji Invision, status thresholds can be set that will notify a technician when printer cartridges reach a minimum level so replacement or refills can be ordered before the existing ones are empty. Remote network management and diagnosis helps ensure the right support tech is sent to the jobsite, saving everyone involved time and money.
How do remote managed services protect end-users?
If any of your employees leave the company, you can immediately revoke their access to Ihiji Invision and also to all of the connected device portals and client networks.
When customers call with support issues, your techs get a remote view into their network letting them see the source of the issue the customer is calling about.
As soon as trouble is identified on any one of your Ihiji-connected client sites, your technicians will have remote access to reboot specific devices to resolve the problem.
What are the associated benefits of providing remote managed services?
Based on results from Ihiji dealers, those with remote managed services offering have reduced the number of truck rolls to client sites to resolve network-related issues by more than 50%. Clients receive an improved customer experience because they don’t have to call for as many issues. That could be the difference between a new referral and a bad review.
If your objective is to minimize client network and device issues, maximize performance and avoid on-site support calls, which are expensive to the integrator and inconvenient for the client, ask for Ihiji and rest assured. Visit our site at Ihiji.com and learn all you need to know about remote managed services and more.
What are some of the features that are most commonly used by integrators to troubleshoot and repair a remote network?
Some of the more common and important features used by integrators inside the Ihiji Invision portal include “ConnectNinja” and the device reboot feature. If any of the devices on a monitored network go offline or report other issues, “ConnectNinja” allows integrators to create a secure “tunnel” into their client’s network to access additional information on the device. Once the device can be monitored again within Ihiji Invision, many support users will utilize the feature in Invision which allows them to soft reboot or power cycle certain devices directly through their browser. For the homeowner, this means that their integrator is finding and resolving these issues before they even realize there is a problem.
Other features that we see integrators use most include the following:
- WAN speed test: This is a great feature that many of our integrators offer to their clients for no charge which will give them an average Internet speed over an extended period. Including download, upload, jitter and latency information. This information helps homeowners know whether or not their ISP is throttling their Internet speeds.
- Network Scan: This feature will quickly provide a comprehensive list of all IP enabled devices that are connected to a network. This makes it easy to determine which devices will be monitored.
How much would the managed system add to a typical contract? Is there a monthly fee?
Setting Ihiji up on a client’s network will require both an Ihiji appliance which plugs into the router as well as a subscription fee which is typically billed annually. Retail pricing on both of these components will vary based upon the number of IP devices being monitored. For most Ihiji dealers that include the appliance and 1-year of service with the project, the percentage of a mid-high end AV job is only a fraction of a percent. Including Ihiji on every project has the advantage of lowering costs to the integrator and delivering a much higher technology uptime for the client. If technology does fail, the service will ensure that the integrator is notified and resolves the issue, even before the homeowner knows anything is wrong.
Ihiji is a start-up Network-Management-as-a-Service (NMaaS) company based in Austin, TX, supported by the Austin Technology Incubator (ATI). Our goal is to provide valuable services that enable cost-effective and efficient remote network, service, and device management.
Our initial product, invision, is a remote monitoring and management tool for businesses that maintain and install residential and commercial audio/video, automation and network systems. invision is an award winning solution, successfully deployed by our re-sellers as a way to streamline service operations and create a more profitable service organization.
The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of HomeToys
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