Small Businesses Offering Wi-Fi Services – at What Service Level?

small business customer wifi

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3.  Network Management:

  • Are the ISPs included in this agreement?
  • Are they using multiple ISPs for redundancy or is one "sufficient?"
  • What amount of bandwidth are they providing and what sort of traffic do they expect?
  • Do they intend to limit bandwidth based on filtering and traffic types?
  • Do they have averages for connection numbers and bandwidth speed requirements?
  • How does it break down?
  • Who manages the ISP relationships?
  • Who manages the internal network?
  • Who is responsible for break/fix of the equipment at the various company locations?
  • What are the SLAs for fixing problems?
  • Is anyone on location from the provider for management and break/fix or does the local crew manage that independently?
  • Is there hardware on-site if replacement is needed or at a location nearby with a SLA-guaranteed arrival and installation time?
  • Where do all those responsibilities lie and what are the SLAs associated with that?

4.  Facilities Management:

This encompasses management capabilities, consoles, responsibilities, SLA times and criteria, what is managed vs unmanaged.

Will there be a third-party provider contracted to do some of the work or will internal staff have to handle it?

Summary

Small business owners need to treat the decision to provide Wi-Fi services to its customers like any other business decision.

Without the appropriate business case analysis a small business owner is likely to ask for a "best practice" solution that may or may not satisfy the true objectives and requirements. After all, a "free" Wi-Fi service may be free to the user but is not without its costs to the provider.

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About the author

Cal Braunstein

Mr. Braunstein serves as Chairman/CEO and Executive Director of Research at the Robert Frances Group (RFG). In addition to his corporate role, he helps his clients wrestle with a range of business, management, regulatory, and technology issues. 
He has deep and broad experience in business strategy management, business process management, enterprise systems architecture, financing, mission-critical systems, project and portfolio management, procurement, risk management, sustainability, and vendor management. Cal also chaired a Business Operational Risk Council whose membership consisted of a number of top global financial institutions.

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