By Jeff Hipchen, Executive Vice President, RF Connect

There’s no getting around it: All businesses must provide robust, always-on wireless communications.

The numbers are staggering, and growing every day: Some 50 percent of all knowledge workers are leveraging mobile devices to access and share data at work. It’s estimated that there are between 2 and 2.6 billion smartphones in use in the workplace, and that’s not including tablets. And 67 percent of workers are governed by a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy.

BYOD brings increased productivity and employee satisfaction while saving money for the enterprise.

In addition to challenging security policies and IT safeguards, the growing BYOD phenomenon demands always-on, always-available device connectivity. Wireless is now a utility (Wireless Utility Network, WUNsm). Any interruption in service is the same as an extended power outage or the well running dry – unacceptable in today’s enterprise. Wireless access in the enterprise is a 100 percent requirement.

As the IoT brings more connected devices into the workplace, such as monitors, sensors and actuators and their related software, businesses must take steps to meet the demands placed on the communications network.

Whether it is Wi-Fi, small cells, Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) or a HetNet combination customized for the venue, businesses need a well-thought-out communications strategy that treats access like all other utilities.

How does your enterprise fare?

  • Are there areas in your enterprise where data slows or where calls are dropped?
  • Is access better during certain hours?
  • If everyone is using the communications network at the same time, can your network support it?
  • Are all commercial carriers supported?
  • Are First Responder frequencies up-to-date to support emergency personnel?

How well are you meeting the goal of an always-on communications network?