In a previous blog post, we discussed in-depth what an IT audit is and why they’re so important. What can your business expect to get from an IT audit, in tangible terms? The answer is a comprehensive audit report that documents each device in your network, how they’re connected, their health and lifecycle status, and much more.
Let’s review each part of a typical IT audit report and explain how that data helps you improve how your business uses its technology.
All IT audit reports should feature a comprehensive visual representation of your network, which shows how the devices in your network are physically connected, as well as how they exchange data and interact with each other.
By mapping the logical connections between all the devices in your computer system, the network diagram helps IT decision makers and executives better understand the “big picture” story of your network.
Armed with this insight, they can make better decisions about hardware upgrades and replacements, visualize cybersecurity threats, and better understand important technology issues. Below is a sample which shows you some of the information that diagram will include.
When you see the term “network infrastructure” in an IT audit report, it refers to all the devices and hardware that connect your servers, workstations, and personal computers. The audit report will illustrate which of those areas require attention. This includes:
Network Cabling Information
Network cables must be installed in a way that minimizes excess, keeping ports and devices uncluttered so maintenance personnel can do their work and upgrade your systems with efficiency.
Switches and routers
These devices help information navigate your network. When they’re not functioning properly, you may experience performance issues, inconsistencies, or network downtime.
The audit report will help you understand when and how to maintain your wireless access points (WAPs) and if appropriate security measures have been taken to keep your WiFi network secure from intruders.
Problems in any of these areas can degrade efficiency or productivity throughout your entire organization. Once you have received an audit report, you’ll want either your IT partner or someone at your organization to help you interpret the results and plan improvements.
Beyond the infrastructure, other key physical elements of your network include servers, computers, and other devices (referred to as “end points” in the IT industry) that your staff use to collaborate and work.
Detailed information about every device connected to your network will be another major feature of the IT audit report.
Network servers – whether they’re virtual or physical – are the core of your network, which is why all audit reports will involve a comprehensive examination of your servers and every component within them. This includes:
Additionally, the report should include detailed information about the environment around the server, such as humidity, temperature, air conditioning and ventilation, and battery backups. Those factors are crucial to the longevity and stability of your servers.
All of the personal computers in your network must stay functioning to assure productivity and maintain morale. An IT audit report will help you better understand these devices and how you can manage them to increase productivity.
Here are some of the details it should include:
An audit report should also include information about the status of printers within your organization. Though some organizations are migrating toward digital collaboration and communication, the average employee spends 22 minutes every day dealing with IT-related issues, with print being a significant amount of that.
Cybersecurity is another major feature of a thorough IT audit report.
The security portion of the report will contain detailed information related to the security readiness of every device. At the outset of the process, the auditor should analyze your company’s security policies, documentation from previous audits, firewall logs, and other relevant data. This will all be reflected in the report and help create a complete picture of overall cyber readiness.
Here’s a partial list of the security information an IT audit will contain:
Firewalls are critical to protecting the outside perimeter of your network. They do this by filtering out traffic from dangerous sources, such as unencrypted websites, and by preventing malicious software from accessing your network and data.
An IT audit report will ensure your firewalls are functioning optimally, which includes:
The last line of defense against threats that slip by your firewalls, anti-virus, and anti-malware systems are critical to helping keep your systems functional and operational. An IT audit report will tell you if those systems are up to date and managed properly, so that your team (or IT partner) can ensure they’ve got each of your systems protected.
Is your business in Albany, NY, Charlotte, NC, or Bluffton, SC in need of a seasoned IT audit team to help you analyze your systems and make targeted recommendations? We’re happy to discuss your IT pain points and goals, then conduct an IT audit that provides your decision makers with deep visibility and insight. Reach out to us any time at 877 877 1840 or [email protected]!
In an ideal world, technology would be a consistent source of competitive advantage and benefit for small and midsized businesses. The reality is that many fail to realize that confidence.
Without the right resources and support, even a highly skilled technology team can become overwhelmed by the growing list of technology management duties. When important tasks get neglected, it creates ripple effects throughout an organization that damage productivity and efficiency.
The co-managed IT services model solves these problems by providing your existing IT team with all the support and resources they need to successfully plan, manage, and defend your network technology.
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