Moving your business to a new location is an exciting time – and it can also be a bit stressful as you try to plan for possible future uses and business growth within your new facility. One of the first things to consider is the structured cabling infrastructure that will provide the basis for all of your telecommunications needs – voice, data, video, and more. And since technology is always moving forward, you want to leave room in your plans for future changes and expansion.
As You Are Planning For Your New Home
Before you decide on who gets which office and what color paint to put on the walls, take the time to assess your cabling needs for the entire space and the equipment placement in your new facility. The first thing you want to be sure to map out is your structured cabling system. This step typically requires an initial investment in equipment and installation costs, but the money spent on setting up a unified cabling system is easily justified by the extensive advantages gained with the capabilities available with a structured cable system. And it’s absolutely necessary to ensure that your telecommunications system is reliable, scalable, flexible, manageable, and complies with all industry standards.
As you think about your connectivity, you will also want to consider the specific telecommunications needs for your business to operate at maximum efficiency. For instance, would your business benefit from cellular boosting, wifi networks, or DAS systems? Should you install copper or fiber cabling? How much bandwidth is required to support the number of users and type of data used for your business now and in the near future?
Once you’ve thought through the networking and communications needs for your business, then it’s time to map out the physical cabling infrastructure that will provide the connectivity you need. Most cabling system pathways move from the data center with an organized flow from horizontal cabling to backbone structure to workstation devices. Your system map should have a data center, cable distribution points, horizontal cabling connections, and modular data cabling stations.
Planning efforts for your cabling system should take into account that cabling often needs to run overhead in ceilings, under flooring, and in or through walls. So mapping out your communications infrastructure could affect or be affected by the construction materials and configuration of your facility.
Keys Things to Consider When Assessing Your Cabling Needs
- Carefully plan the layout of the cables and networking pathways to allow devices to connect to any other device at the location to be moved to different spots within the facility
- Think about device placement, future growth or changes, and possible resale value added to the facility by installing high-quality, well-placed cabling infrastructure
- Allow room for airflow around cables and connection points
- Limit bends in the cables, pressure placed on the cables, and the length of individual cable between connection points and devices
- Make sure you have the correct type and size of cable for device and bandwidth needs
- Configure cabling structure in such a way to allow you to easily identify each cable/connection, troubleshoot the network, and make changes in the future
Remember, it’s much better and less expensive to consider and make the physical arrangements for all of your communications needs – phone, computer, video, security, etc. – before construction is complete or at least before moving into your new facility. The less you have to cut through ceiling, walls, and floors to install your cabling system the right way, the better it will be for your budget and for work productivity. Prior planning will help you achieve your communications goals plus save money, time, and trouble later.
If you are like most business owners, finding a way to design, implement, and manage your cabling system is outside your realm of expertise. That’s where a telecommunications provider, like Unified Technologies, can help. We know the ins and outs of structured cabling and how to install the right telecommunications system to meet the needs of your growing business.