Meraki is a great fit for Managed Services providers.
We have a common dashboard of the environment and the ability to manage all our customers networks from one pane of glass, while keeping these securely separated.
The ability to manage an array of networks from one simple dashboard means one thing - efficiency in management, which in turn reduces cost.
Meraki is great for end customers and MSPs alike.
Cloud W-Fi along with switching, cameras and security appliances form up a feature rich, end-end product set from Meraki.
Let's take a look through the options that the Meraki portal affords us, and how these can benefit end customers.
Meraki Managed Services Provider (MSP) Portal
Meraki includes an in-built cloud-based MSP-style network management portal.
The portal has a number of valuable features:
- Visibility: Allows visibility over multiple organisations
- Device Health: Provides indications of device health and locations, as well as licensing health
- User Segmentation: Can see health of all networks where the user has privileges
- Overview: Great for quick visibility and status, comfy feeling that everything is working across all organisations or networks
Incidentally for MSPs and customers alike, we offer a Wi-Fi Assurance review if your network is not performing. Even though Meraki is low maintenance to install and operate, the design needs to be right in the first place.Meraki MSP - All Networks View
The ability to view all customer networks from one place allows for MSP administrators to easily work across multiple customers, providing for support and assistance.
In one screen you can see how many organisations and networks are in your view, how many devices are included and if there are any issues
The all networks view is shown blow and provides an overview of the number of clients, devices and the throughput:
As an alternate, for companies with multiple branch locations, this feature provides a single-pane-of-glass to see the status of the network.
Meraki Automated Upgrades
One of the major benefits of Meraki is the automated, scheduled upgrade feature. The Return on Investment of Meraki equipment is greatly improved by the reduction in expensive manpower to undertake upgrades.
The dashboard includes a view on this feature:
- Automated upgrade notifications: Dashboard can be automated to upgrade during determined upgrade windows to incur minimum outage effect, or minimum outage time (upgrading 1 device at a time, vs upgrading all devices at once)
Meraki MSP - All Organisations View
The all organisations view provides for a nice geographic status. This shows how many devices are in each region and if there are any issues.
The Information displayed includes granularity of how many clients are connected to the network and how much network usage there has been.
The all organisations view is shown below:
As you can see from above, visualisation is an important part of the Meraki experience.
Meraki Single Organisation View
Clicking on an organization brings you to an organization overview, providing unmatched visibility.
The image below shows a single organisation view, where the APs are shown on the amp and data about the connected end clients and the network devices themselves is shown:
Cisco Meraki MSP Summary
Using Meraki in Managed Serviced Provider deployments makes a lot of sense for the MSP and customer alike.
For the MSP, the ability to view all the network statuses across the deployed customer base from a single location is a real time saver. The cloud based nature of Meraki means that support teams can be remote and this is the major benefit for customers - Meraki is cheaper to support. Gone are the days of a network engineer having to run a code upgrade at 2am - this is automatically and dynamically scheduled for Meraki.
For both MSP and customer alike, the Meraki dashboard brings the network to life, with great visualisations and an easy to read and operate GUI.
As a segway into another blog worth a read, team work is important to the delivery and deployment of networks small and large alike.