Four reasons to use the Dashboard API, and a webinar to help

Announcing a free instructional webinar with Cisco DevNet

The dashboard is sacred at Meraki. We’ve built it to be powerful, scalable, and above all, simple for our customers to use from deployment and beyond. That being said, we’ve seen a trend over the last 12+ years in cloud-managed IT: customers and partners are increasingly looking for ways to automate, integrate, and build on top of the Meraki dashboard. This requires access to our growing API services.

Cisco DevNet is running an instructional webinar to help customers and partners get started using the Meraki Dashboard API, as part of the DevNet Automation webinar series! Registration is open for this session on August 22nd, 11am EST. 

If you’ve seen the Meraki dashboard, you might be wondering why anyone would want to bother with APIs, when everything is so easy to use in the web interface! While many of our customers never need to check out our API services, there are some compelling reasons to consider looking under the hood. Here are four reasons why learning how to use the Meraki Dashboard API service could be beneficial to your organization or daily management: 

1. Automate dashboard workflows

Do you always take the same 10 steps to set up a new AP, change port configurations, or update a password on an SSID? How much time would be saved in your next deployment or in your weekly/daily management if you could automate those steps across networks or dashboard organizations? 

2. Quickly report on cross-organization trends, audit users/devices/status 

If someone tapped you on the shoulder today and demanded an audit of all dashboard administrators (or uplink status across all deployed Meraki devices, or content filtering rules, or all of the above), how would you pull this information from the dashboard? How many clicks would it take to gather this from different networks/organizations? Learn how to use the API to save yourself the clicks!

3. Integrate dashboard data into other tools and applications

Would data from the dashboard provide insight in any internal applications or interfaces you’re using – to manage service desk tickets, access control, customer loyalty programs on your WiFi networks, etc.? Meraki API services can enable this rich integration with other technologies, through turnkey solutions pre-built by our technology partners or by providing the building blocks for other integrations. 

4. Build new applications on top of Meraki technologies

Have you ever considered building a web form to allow your on-site staff to deploy new gear without logging in to the dashboard? Are there IoT initiatives in your office(s) that rely on network integrations? Learning to use Meraki API services will unlock a world of new possibilities for you to efficiently and creatively leverage dashboard data and services in new ways.

For the reasons above (and beyond!), we have doubled down on our vision to provide open and extensible API services across Meraki products. We know that many of our customers using the API today didn’t expect to have that need when they invested in Meraki, but as additional (and often non-network related) business requirements, projects, and initiatives get piled onto their plate, having a programmable network infrastructure has proven to be a lifesaver! 

We are committed to making it as simple as possible to program with Meraki APIs, whether you have a coding background or are learning as you go. We hope you’ll be able to join Cisco DevNet for this instructional webinar! Stay tuned for more API-focused sessions coming soon, or check out our Developer Hub for news, learning labs and API resources.