Wireless Network
Author profile - Dipannita
Dipannita Roy
November 17, 2021

How To Select The Right Wireless Networking Service Providers?

Making the right decisions in life is very important. The same thing is applicable whenever it comes to choosing wireless networking service providers.

So, it would be best if you were very selective about the wireless service provider you are partnering with. It is because they play a significant role in designing, deploying, and helping support your wireless network. 

Consider several factors: efficiency, productivity, costs or budgets, user satisfaction, performance, safety, etc. It would be best to focus on selecting a wireless networking service provider based on your particular requirements.  

Essential Things To Know While Selecting Wireless Networking Service Providers

Let's get ahead with our discussion.

Types Of Certifications To Look For While Selecting Wireless Networking Service Providers

As a customer, your sole responsibility is to check whether your service provider is certified on the product they are installing or proposing. They should at minimum possess the professional level of certification. 

If possible, you can even demand expert-level accreditation; for example, Aruba possesses ACMA, the base associate certification. 

They also include professional-level accreditation, i.e., ACMP. Finally, they have the ACDX or ACMX certifications, the design and mobility expert-level certifications. 

On the other hand, Cisco possesses the CCNP-Wireless and CCNA-Wireless along with their product certifications have Master, Advanced, and Express levels. 

It would help if you asked your service provider about vendor-neutral certificates such as CWNP. 

So, the minimum level of certification that they should possess is Certified Wireless Technology Specialist (CWTS). It is the base cert. And, the second level cert is the Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA). 

Any extra certs, i.e., CWNE, CWSP, CWAP, and CWDP, are a bonus. Another important thing is to get an idea about the knowledge and experience level of the provider. 

Type Of Software They Make Use Of For Validating The Performance Of A Wireless System Once It Has Been Installed

Your wireless networking service provider should make use of software that will help to measure RF signal coverage. 

Also, the software they use should perform some of the simple active measurements such as throughput, latency, and roaming performance. 

So, it would help if you asked your service provider whether they are making use of tools or software that are cloud-based. 

These cloud-based tools should help provide input from the system that aids in understanding the system's environment and performance. 

Again, these tools are specifically from the manufacturer and are included in their network management system or NMS. 

Restrict choosing a service provider who cannot generate a report from the software or application that they are using. 

It means that they can also not provide customers with the details of the system installed and its performance. So, opting for their services would be very risky. 

Types Of Things Wireless Networking Service Providers Are Monitoring Constantly

It is better to stay away from a service provider who does not do any ongoing monitoring. Your wireless network is not considered to be a static system. It is dynamic and alive. 

This particular reason requires you to be proactive whenever it comes to managing your performance. Usually, the right wireless service provider will want you to do monitoring of data like: 

  • IDS or IPS: Intrusion Prevention and Intrusion Detection
  • RF Coverage: Real-time Visual RF "heat maps" specifically on floor plans
  • The location of the client by floor map
  • Client status; SNR, channel, AP, PHY rate, roaming history, and RSSI level
  • Channel utilization
  • Bandwidth that clients consume
  • Device down or up status 

It is also essential to have some proactive testing and monitoring. Also, it will let you know about the system's performance from various points in your campus or facility. 

An alternative is to have "sensor" clients which connect to the wireless network. Ultimately, it helps in running scheduled tests and reporting back the results. 

These "sensor" clients work like any other client device that connects to the wireless network. They again conduct tests to check if they can authenticate and associate to the WLAN. 

Also, they focus on testing DNS resolution and testing to get an IP address. And, they consider testing to reach their gateway and bring it to a particular website or two. 

If they can successfully do all of these things within a certain time threshold, then it means that the WLAN functions appropriately. 

Final Verdict

So, the above-discussed ones are some of the significant factors that you should essentially keep in mind while choosing wireless networking services

I hope you have found this comprehensive guide to be very useful and informative. Reading this guide before opting for these services will help you to make an effective decision.