For IT professionals, delivering service and support to remote workers can be challenging—but it doesn’t have to be.
Demand for support has increased as more workforces go entirely or partially remote. Today’s workforces and workplaces mean corporate networks may no longer support primarily office-based employees. Rather, because remote and corporate workers communicate with the network, they generate new types of trouble tickets and potential headaches in areas like security and connectivity, which can impact employee experience.
Workers at home expect to have the same simple, secure, and reliable network access they get on-site so they can stay connected to cloud-based collaboration applications without any glitches. The last thing remote workers want to worry about is the performance of their network connection or how to configure their VPN.
To stay competitive and thrive, businesses must simplify their networking infrastructure by adopting a cloud network architecture. Gartner estimates that by 2025, over 95% of new digital workloads will be deployed on cloud-native platforms, up from 30% in 2021. The inherent nature of a cloud network means that resources are shared, allowing businesses to quickly spin them up when needed. This provides the scale and flexibility organizations need to thrive in a cost-efficient way.
It’s not surprising, therefore, that a growing number of IT teams have found that embracing a cloud-first approach to networking and connectivity leads to success.
Built for immediate connectivity
To fulfill the opportunities that remote workforces offer—such as a broad ecosystem of employees, a more diverse pool of candidates, and a better ability to retain key team members and recruit new staff—and address challenges like security, equal access to resources, and a delightful experience for remote employees, IT leaders want scalable solutions that are simple to set up and manage.
Cisco Meraki devices are designed to be plugged in virtually anywhere in the world to instantly deliver a seamless in-office experience at home. With Meraki cloud management, IT professionals maintain visibility across employee networks and network performance.
The Meraki dashboard also empowers IT admins to quickly identify VPN clients within the organization.
How Meraki can help
With remote work technologies by Meraki, IT teams keep their organizations operating seamlessly and securely, wherever they are. Meraki support is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help your organization’s remote, on-site, and hybrid teams do their best work. If you want to learn more about how Meraki can help mobilize your workforce, watch our on-demand webinar.
In adopting digital transformation, businesses increasingly rely on connecting cloud-specific services. The ongoing pandemic has necessitated, and in many cases, speed this adoption. By leveraging technology, businesses are likely to continue looking for ways to improve efficiency, and reduce costs, as they navigate these difficult times.
Cisco Meraki Cellular Gateway (MG) is built to address the growing demand for operational reliability and business continuity across industries. MG allows for better performance, quick provisioning, high availability, and redundancy in providing cellular wireless WAN connectivity to geographically dispersed networks.
As businesses are starting to take advantage of the advancements in cellular technology, we’re empowering them to be scalable. The shift towards the distributed application model, workforces, and software-defined technologies is leading to the increased need for API access to the network. The good news is that MG can be configured and managed using the Meraki Dashboard API!
What can the Meraki API do for your cellular WAN connectivity?
Through automation and integrations, the Meraki Dashboard API for MG enables scale, growth, and future-proofing.
IT teams can add new organizations, administrators, cellular networks, and MG devices across thousands of locations in minutes with an automation script. By automating network provisioning and bulk configurations, IT teams can minimize manual and routine tasks, freeing up time to work on more important things such as optimizing for better performance or developing modern apps. The Meraki Dashboard API also offers flexibility in cloning sites or developing templates to help you get MGs deployed easily.
Much of configuration-related set up such as DHCP, LAN, port forwarding rules, subnet pool, and uplink settings, entails repetitive tasks and is prone to human error. Network administrators spend a lot of time on these repetitive configuration and monitoring tasks that can be automated and made error-free using APIs. With MG, customers can do so via APIs to avoid manual error and service downtime—significantly reducing the management workload.
With the Meraki Dashboard API, one of our retail customers was able to rapidly automate deployment and provisioning at more than 2000 distributed locations nationwide. The resulting streamlined operations reduced overhead and costs for them.
Integration and future-proofing
The potential of the Meraki Dashboard API goes beyond faster, seamless, and cost-effective automation. Meraki API services are easy to use, easy to train staff to program with, and ripe for technology partners to continue to build native integrations on top of. For growing businesses, using these API services can significantly increase speed-to-market.
The Cisco Meraki Dashboard API is a RESTful API that uses HTTPS requests to a URL and JSON as a human-readable format. So, what does this mean for our customers? This higher software programmability using structured network data makes it easier to integrate with business logic systems. When building APIs, they can choose from a larger pool of skilled resources. Businesses can build their dashboard for store managers or specific use cases, allowing them to quickly add new services.
Lack of end-to-end visibility is problematic when troubleshooting network issues such as high latency and jitter. By monitoring the cellular connectivity and signal strength of MG devices through APIs, IT teams can save hours of troubleshooting. Meraki APIs make our platform extensible and allow you to be agile in responding to quickly changing business needs. Meraki offers a comprehensive platform that complements out-of-the-box management and analytics for Wireless WAN deployments with the integrations and solutions powered by Meraki APIs.
Organizations across industries are eager to build their Wireless WAN infrastructure on the Meraki platform and some of them already have a head start with our new product line – MG Cellular Gateway. MG provides a solution for optimal cellular signal strength. It gives our customers the flexibility of pairing MG with any Meraki or Cisco ISR/vEdge router or 3rd party router to provide another uplink for SD-WAN, or as a failover or primary link.
MG was only launched a couple of months ago and we’re already releasing new features. There is no better way to see these features in action than to try it out for yourself.
Quick network diagnosis
We’re always seeking to provide capabilities that truly add value to our customer’s business. For cellular troubleshooting, customers have frequently told us how challenging it can get without any visibility into the signal characteristics at their site. This lack of control leads to them taking a hit on business functions that rely on cellular signals.
MG users can now take advantage of this data within the Meraki platform to quickly diagnose what’s affecting cellular connectivity, or what led to performance degradation, through historical stats— signal strength, latency, and loss—that are visual and easy to interpret. By knowing how cellular connectivity is at certain sites at any given time, it’s simple to get to the root cause of network issues. Easy monitoring of live data along with the signal level, signal quality, and connectivity data could potentially save hours of troubleshooting.
It gets even better with an API-driven architecture. MG can be managed completely through APIs, giving customers the flexibility of custom reporting and integrations that they need. Stay tuned for more updates!
How to access
From your Meraki dashboard, go to Monitor->Cellular gateways; select the MG for which you’d like to get the health data, and then go to Uplink from the menu bar. Scroll below to view the historical and connectivity data as far as 30 days in the past.