Shedding Light on Aruba Clarity

By George Stafanick, Blog Contributor
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Gather 'round, because Aruba Clarity has launched. Clarity, unveiled in March and prominently featured at ATM '16, is an optional module for Aruba AirWave network management. But I suspect that many IT departments might find that it is a fairly essential part of their day-to -day network administration.

I could go into an overall review of features and functionality of Aruba Clarity, but I feel as if that has already been artfully covered by Eddie Ferrero here:

Instead, I'd like to hone in on a couple of the features of this module and take a look at how this technology is beneficial from the business and management angle.

The Details of Delegation

The level of detail that the Aruba Clarity module provides is great. But I can see where the uncomplicated manner in which they deliver those details is probably the best feature when you are considering the business value of this tool. That combination of critical information and more so, critical information organized in a useful and meaningful way, makes it relatively easy for IT folks with respectable wireless experience to help with monitoring the network.

Aruba Clarity is exactly the type of tool that will let the IT manager focus on the large scale issues that absolutely require a more advanced skillset. Or… they might be able to take off and go on a genuine vacation! Ideally, one that isn't continuously interrupted by fire alarms back at the office. Plenty of studies show that the employee who isn't taking advantage of vacation time is not a the hard-working, always available asset that some might think. Instead, that person is a stressed, burned out liability.

A survey conducted in 2014 by Oxford Economics showed that "the average vacation liability per employee totals $1,898."

But why don't people take their vacations? Well according to Project: Time Off, 35% feel that nobody else can do their job and 40% say they don't want to return to a "mountain of work". No doubt this resonates with a lot of people who manage IT networks.

In this way, Aruba Clarity can allow the highly skilled network managers to delegate to less skilled team members and not shoulder the responsibility of addressing every single aspect of the network management and troubleshooting.

In summary, the ability to streamline and delegate the management of a wireless network = happy IT managers and staff. Happy IT managers and staff = lower costs to the business.

The New Trend is Training

Again, this module gives detailed, granular visibility of the network performance at user, device and app levels. And does so using a clean and intuitive interface – a nice balance of sophistication and simplicity.

For example, four critical phases of a device connecting to the network are nicely displayed, front and center -  Association, Authentication, DHCP and DNS – making it really uncomplicated to note exactly where any connectivity problems might be occurring.


As I already mentioned, the user-friendliness of Aruba Clarity means that the module can be easily used by a first tier helpdesk team to monitor and troubleshoot the network. Of course, when typically difficult tasks are made easier, the cost of training goes down. Recently, I read an article from TechRepublic about the growing trend of training which said that companies, in an effort to fill IT positions and not finding qualified candidates, are turning to hiring people with minimal skills and then bringing them up to speed with internal training.

At the same time, the article mentions that training methods such a self-paced e-learning or classroom training are not always successful. The former is tough to enforce, the latter can be expensive and time-consuming. For some companies, on the job training and mentoring can be a cheaper and more effective way.

So if you are a company faced with managing a network, but struggling to find someone with the turn-key skills to do it, the prospect of being able to bring someone in and relativity easily, mentor them and train them - potentially on the job -  is valuable. I think it is obvious how a tool like Aruba Clarity could go a long way in helping to address that type of business challenge.