Structured cabling refers to any infrastructure that uses a number of standardised cabling elements. It can (and often does) include cables, computers, phones, printers and all other essential hardware that makes up an office/business network. Structured cabling is a more organised approach than conventional wiring and will manage the cabling for your entire infrastructure. It has the benefits of not only being neat and tidy but also incredibly easy to maintain and service.
Structured cabling is governed by a set of standards that outline how cabling should be laid, what type of cabling is to be used (such as Cat5, Cat6, fibre optic, etc.) and the different topologies that apply. This is achieved using a central patch panel through which each outlet can be connected into a network switch, IP or PBX.
While your system will, of course, be bespoke and tailored to your company needs and requirements, it is still important that it adheres to these principles in order to adhere to the standards and ensure the best possible structured cabling solution.
Not only does a structured cabling system make life easier for the business, but it has a number of additional benefits including:
Structured cabling systems have become ever more popular and are now seen in the majority of well run office spaces. Office infrastructure has come a long way since people began moving away from traditional wiring systems and, if installed with foresight, structured systems will outlive older networks by many years.
In essence, structured cabling has simply become an essential component of any successful business network.
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Matt Nice, Director of ICT, Bristol Grammar School