In addition to understanding changing traffic trends, a network administrator must also be aware of how network use is changing. As shown in the figure, a network administrator in a small network has the ability to obtain in-person IT “snapshots” of employee application utilization for a significant portion of the employee workforce over time. These snapshots typically include information such as:

Documenting snapshots for employees in a small network over a period of time will go a long way toward informing the network administrator of evolving protocol requirements and associated traffic flows. For example, it may be that some employees are using off-site resources such as social media in order to better position a company with respect to marketing. When they began working for the company, these employees may have focused less on Internet-based advertising. This shift in resource utilization may require the network administrator to shift network resource allocations accordingly.

It is the responsibility of the network administrator to track network utilization and traffic flow requirements, and implement network modifications in order to optimize employee productivity as the network and business grow.