CIOs and their teams are called upon to manage more complex customer demands while finding it increasingly challenging to hire and retain IT employees. As a recent study by the IEEE entitled “The Impact of Technology in 2022 and Beyond” found, recruiting technologists and filling open tech positions represent one of the top challenges among 73% of the 350 chief information officers, chief technology officers, IT directors, and other technology leaders interviewed.
From keeping pace with increasingly fast-moving technology innovation to adapting to hybrid work practices, CIOs’ jobs certainly are not getting any easier. They want their teams to be liberated from manual processes as much as possible so as to increase productivity and spend more time on strategic initiatives. Thankfully, Passpoint can address some of the top challenges IT leaders are facing today by automatizing time-consuming Wi-Fi onboarding and management processes.
Constant un-strategic troubleshooting
Wi-Fi technology now plays an essential role in enterprise networks. When a visitor or colleague from another branch visits the office, one of the first things they require is access to Wi-Fi. Unfortunately, connecting to traditional enterprise Wi-Fi is not without problems and friction. Wi-Fi issues put an additional burden on CIOs and their teams, which were already struggling to deal with solving emergency issues and troubleshooting for an exponential number of endpoints resulting from bring your own device (BYOD).
A 2021 study found that 42 % of IT professionals spent too much time troubleshooting the network and that 43 % struggled to find time to work on strategic business initiatives. Another report found that “59 % of IT pros were frustrated by the time spent on routine infrastructure activities, and 84 % agreed that they could bring more value to their organization if they spent less time on routine tasks.”
The impact can be quite negative on IT staff morale and the enterprise’s ability to implement a long-term digital transformation strategy.
What is Passpoint?
Let us first quickly explain to those not familiar with what Passpoint is. Passpoint is based on the IEEE 802.11u standard, and it is the brand for the Hotspot 2.0 certification program, Wi-Fi CERTIFIED Passpoint, operated by the Wi-Fi Alliance. It is an industry-wide solution that streamlines Wi-Fi access and eliminates the need for visitors to find and authenticate a network each time they visit. Passpoint grants instant, secure Wi-Fi access to visitors after once-in-a-lifetime provisioning of the Passpoint profile in their mobile device. Then, the enabled devices automatically connect to the company’s network whenever they arrive at any campus.
Supporting hybrid work
Hybrid work is a new reality that CIOs and their teams must adapt to as well as support. From a technology perspective, establishing systems and software platforms to enable collaboration and effective communication has been the priority for CIOs and will continue in the foreseeable future. Not only are employees now working both at home and the office, but they also are more likely to work from distinct offices and require onboarding to the respective organization’s Wi-Fi networks. By providing a secure and seamless onboarding platform, Passpoint can supercharge the Wi-Fi experience in this new highly mobile and agile working environment.
Addressing Network Managers and IT staff shortage
Hiring and retaining IT talent is both a priority and a challenge for CIOs despite the fact that the national average salary for a network engineer is $91,047 in the United States. The 2021-2023 Emerging Technology Roadmap for Large Enterprises report from Gartner Inc. reveals 64 % of IT executives cite talent shortages as the most significant barrier to the adoption of emerging technology, compared with only 4 % in 2020.
As demands on CIOs and their teams have increased, burnout among IT employees has become an issue that must be addressed. Given the ongoing “great resignation” occurring across the globe, providing the best tools and processes to Network Managers and IT staff should be a priority. By automating Wi-Fi onboarding in a secure way, Passpoint can have a positive impact on IT employees’ morale by reducing service calls and complaints, as well as providing overall troubleshooting associated with Wi-Fi connectivity.
Keeping up with innovation
From evaluating and integrating new cloud technologies to virtual reality and machine learning to implementing new automation and deploying the latest Wi-Fi platforms, CIOs and their teams can barely keep up with all the new tools and skills they need to learn and master. By enabling seamless and secure onboarding of campus visitors, Passpoint can free up tremendous time and energy for Network Managers and IT staff so they can focus on more strategic tasks which add value to the organization in the medium and long term.
Implementing Passpoint will result in more efficient, happier CIOs and their teams liberated from routine connectivity tasks and who can focus on planning and implementing high-value strategic initiatives for the business.
Andrea Calcagno is the CEO and Founder of Cloud4Wi.