By Natasha Koskenniemi, Director of Marketing, Netrounds

Top performing companies have one thing in common: they are much more likely to employ active assurance methods than not. This is a finding of a recent survey conducted by Netrounds concerning Network Brownouts unexpected and unintentional drops in network quality.

Netrounds has been voicing for years that there is a difference between traditional service assurance and active service assurance. Active assurance isn’t just another buzzword; as observed in the results from the Netrounds’ Network Brownouts Survey, enterprises are recognizing the benefits of active assurance. 

If you are not familiar with the term “active” service assurance, but short on time, you can read our blog post “Network Monitoring Systems – What are they? And what are the Differentiators?” in order to get an overview of the differentiators. Alternatively, you can read more in depth about the differences between classical and active assurance platforms in our white paper “Reimagining Service Assurance in the Digital Service Provider Era.” 

The fact that most customers and end-users are the ones finding network problems is nothing new. This has already been concluded in a number of surveys and articles such as a Forrester study commissioned by Compuware and Gartner’s “How to Approach Customer Experience Management.” The Netrounds’ Network Brownout Survey not only affirmed this common finding, but also revealed hidden costs in most organizations in direct correlation to network brownouts. Of the 400 respondents, 90% of enterprises believe that their network is critically important for their business, yet more than 60% of network brownouts are first discovered by customers and employees, or never even reported, rather than being proactively detected by IT organizations. 

Since uncovering these survey findings, Netrounds has gained a great deal of traction in the industry. Over 30 articles have been written covering the astonishing results of the survey including TechRepublic, IT Ops Times, Tech Investor News, VMBlog and dozens more. Below is what some of the industry’s leading press outlets are saying:

Network brownouts differ from network outages, as outages are complete network interruptions and brownouts are drops in network quality. Yet, a brownout’s potential for damage is nearly as drastic as an outage. Respondents ranked persistent brownout damage as the third most crucial network performance issues they face, only falling behind damage from network outages and security breaches, the survey said.” − TechTarget “Although 90% of respondents said their network is critical for business operations, network brownouts remain a persistently silent but detrimental foe.”

“A new survey from Netrounds of 400 companies with at least 1,000 workers shows another glaring problem. The majority of brownouts are not even discovered by IT. Shockingly, IT is only aware of 39% of these occurrences. Obviously – if they are not aware of the problem, they aren’t going to fix it. And these outages can be long – seven hours or more at a time.” − TMCnet

“The biggest group responsible for notifying companies of a network brownout were customers and employees at 42%.” − TechRepublic “Netrounds had a few suggestions for the companies repeatedly suffering from brownouts. They said the companies with IT departments that do frequent active testing and monitoring were 5 to 10 times more likely to avoid brownouts or catch them early.”

Top performing companies were 1.5 times more likely to run activation tests from the perspective of their customers before giving access to new applications or network connections. In addition, they were also 70 percent more likely to perform specific active monitoring scenarios for new applications. According to Netrounds, the top three causes of brownouts (congestion or load issues, missing/misconfigured QoS, and problematic in-line devices) can be avoided by using active monitoring.” − IT Ops Times

Do you, like many other companies, believe that your IT organization is struggling to identify and mitigate network brownouts? If you are ready to get on top of network brownouts and proactively assure your network quality from an end-user perspective, please refer to the survey report “Understanding Network Brownouts” for details on how to reduce brownout impacts, or contact us − we are happy to answer any of your questions.