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AI: Doing More with Less in 2020 and Beyond

By Cherie Martin, Senior Solutions Marketing Manager
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Customers are always telling me that they are being asked to “do more, with less.” Again, and again, the stories sound familiar. Their IT teams are small and budgets are tight, while the hard work of keeping the network up and running is more complicated than ever. And operations is only one responsibility. There’s also a growing list of requests to roll out new apps and services that’s overwhelming even the most seasoned admins.

What if a large portion of day-to-day operations were automated? How about if AI-based machine learning was sitting everywhere in the network to help IT focus on higher-level projects?

AI has the smarts to handle lots of the network issues that flood helpdesks on a daily basis. Think of the calls and trouble tickets for bad client connectivity and poor network performance that would just go away. Those problems often start with poor RF fundamentals and siphon off buckets of productivity that could be better spent elsewhere.

Once the calls start, solving an RF issue can require visits to remote sites, RF spectrum analysis, efforts to reproduce the problem, and time on the phone with a vendor’s technical support.  In addition to RF issues, IT handles those curious intermittent problems that can be especially difficult to troubleshoot and even more time-consuming to solve.

Wouldn’t it be great if your network could tell you what’s wrong when these situations happen and recommend how to fix them? Networks that include AI and automation can do just that.

Using AI to Solve Real-World Issues
Tools with embedded AI are maturing rapidly. These intelligent automation tools are designed specifically for IT teams who need fast and proactive resolutions for their end users. In fact, AIOps is a fast-emerging approach in our industry.

AI can provide insights, optimization improvements and configuration recommendations in areas that include:

  • Connectivity – all stages including association, authentication, DHCP and DNS
  • Bandwidth and throughput – optimal channels and radio bands (2.4 GHz and 5 GHz)
  • Wi-Fi performance – AP location and density, airtime utilization
  • AP performance – transmit power, frequent channel changes, “green” power savings
  • App responsiveness – internal apps and cloud-hosted SaaS
  • Metrics – connectivity time, throughput, latency, jitter, MOS score, packet loss, frame retries, RSSI

Let’s look at the top list of usual trouble tickets and see how AI gives IT a head start. It’s the fast track to identifying a problem and recommending a solution so that you can do more, with fewer resources.

“I can’t connect to the network.” AI can run different algorithms and create dashboard views that immediately enable IT admins to see the connectivity health for all clients. Necessities such as overall score, health of each stage of the connectivity journey, and insights regarding root causes are easily understood. Drilling down, IT admins can even access details on issues affecting specific clients.

“I can’t connect to the network.”

“The internet is slow. It’s taking forever to download and send files.” A poor performing network means users are less productive. AI can immediately pinpoint the source of issues and recommend actions for an IT admin to take that will optimize performance and restore normal operation so employees can get back to work.

“The internet is slow. It’s taking forever to download and send files.” “We’re working on a project in the Yosemite conference room and Wi-Fi connections keep getting dropped.” APs are often the root cause of the problem when users are having trouble in a specific location. AI and automation provide the IT team with both the cause and recommendation so that they have the insight needed to eliminate guesswork and move quickly into problem-solving mode.

"Wi-Fi connections keep getting dropped."

AI Takes Center Stage at Aruba
Investing in AI innovations that solve real-world problems is our mission. Aruba Central, our cloud-managed, networking-operations platform, relies on AI to analyze log and telemetry data about infrastructure devices, traffic, performance and problems. AI Insights, a feature built into Aruba Central, let’s you see AI generated data that is continuously captured across your network.

The great part is that AI continually improves its understanding of good, fair and poor performance for networks of all types, sizes, topologies and traffic patterns across industries. This continuous learning is shaped into recommended actions that network admins can use to proactively fix problems and optimize experiences without spending long stretches of time troubleshooting.

Each and every day, Aruba Central is the network platform that can save IT admins time by helping admins do the heavy lifting. AI lets IT finally achieve that difficult goal of doing more, with less.

Want to learn more about Aruba’s cloud-managed networking solution for midsized businesses? Click here.