How To Build a Network Operations Center (NOC)

Network disruptions and failures don’t follow a 9 to 5 schedule. That’s why you need a dedicated team to monitor your clients’ network performance and health 24/7/365 from a centralized location — a network operations center (NOC).

But building a NOC is a complex undertaking. Besides staffing the team with the right talents, you need to invest in technologies and set up processes to cover all your bases.

The good news is that there are different ways to build a NOC to meet your business and budget requirements. Here are the options to consider:

Build an In-house NOC

An in-house network operations center gives you more control while ensuring the continuity of knowledge and processes. You can have all the NOC functions, such as asset management, remote monitoring, scripting, issue auditing, patch management, and more under one roof for easy coordination.

However, this option requires a substantial upfront investment to set up a NOC that can handle the growing demand of today’s digital business environment. For example, you need to purchase hardware and software and implement best practices. Meanwhile, hiring qualified IT personnel has become more challenging and costly in the tight labor market.

You also have to bear the fixed overhead cost of running a large team. These include salaries, rent, HR expenses, equipment maintenance, training, and more. Not to mention, an in-house NOC offers less flexibility to scale up or down quickly to meet fast-changing market conditions.

Outsource Your NOC to a Third Party

This option involves outsourcing your network operations center entirely to a vendor that runs a team on your behalf. It takes care of hiring, training, and resource management. It also provides the equipment and manages the day-to-day operations. You can get up and running quickly with a low upfront cost and predictable monthly expenses.

However, finding a provider that fully aligns with your internal operations and procedures can be challenging. You may lack the visibility you need to stay on top of everything happening at your NOC to ensure that it’s working seamlessly with the rest of your IT functions.

If you decide to discontinue the relationship with the vendor, it can be difficult to ensure a seamless transition of the various processes. The discontinuity, especially if the procedures aren’t well-documented and the hand-off isn’t well-orchestrated, can disrupt your business operations.

Augment Your Existing Team with an IT Staff Augmentation Solution

This option can offer the best of both worlds. It gives you more control over the processes and allows you to retain knowledge internally. Meanwhile, you can solve the main challenges associated with running an in-house NOC, such as hiring the right talents, shouldering high upfront costs, handling administrative tasks, and lacking the agility to scale quickly.

An IT staff augmentation service provider handles recruitment, manages HR tasks, and provides team members with the proper equipment. You can choose whom to add to your team, manage their work as you would with in-house resources, and keep using your existing tools and processes.

To make the most of a remote staffing arrangement, you must be clear about your responsibilities vs. your vendor’s commitments. For example, you’d likely be responsible for scheduling the work, monitoring the quality of services delivered, providing training in business-specific processes, and ensuring the optimum utilization of each augmented team member.

Get the Most out of IT Staff Augmentation

Outsourced NOC staffing is ideal for filling skill gaps, adding specialized resources to your team, covering overflow, or performing out-of-hours shifts. You can retain control over your operations while lowering the overheads of hiring a large team.

It’s critical to work with a reputable service provider to get the most out of this staffing strategy. Your solution should help you perform continuous IT infrastructure monitoring, issue prevention, and expert remediation. It should provide talents who can work within your preferred tool stack and alongside your existing team.

Your vendor should also have a tried-and-true process to ensure that you get the best resources to meet your requirements and handle all the onboarding processes efficiently.

When you partner with Halexo, we start with a scoping exercise to identify the NOC resources you need and give you itemized estimates for implementation. Then, you can review our resource suggestions and assemble your team. We’ll set up everything and make sure your new team members become productive as quickly as possible.

Learn more about our remote NOC staffing solution and get in touch to see how we can help.