Unlock Network, Security, Performance, and Collaboration Potential With SD-WAN
SD-WAN is the foundation for all the other services you will sell. Which is a pretty big statement, but with more and more organizations moving partially or completely to the Cloud, it’s extremely accurate. Your customers need an internet that is optimized for their unique usage and requirements, which is just one way SD-WAN delivers.
What is SD-WAN? Software Defined Wide Area Networks (SD-WAN) provide intelligent routing and combine network connectivity across the various ISP and WAN Providers for campuses, cities, states, and the globe – ensuring the highest level of Cloud performance, while helping protect the organization from threats. Put simply, the centralized IT department (or managed services partner), gains functional control over the whole network, increasing performance while delivering a high-quality user experience that increases business productivity.
Automation and Simplicity of Provisioning add a whole other level of functionality, simply define intent over the entire, or subsections of the network, and let the software handle the rollout. For some approaches, there’s also no need to pre-configure devices, as long as they are set to communicate with the centralized control, and has a connection, the software will bring everything into configuration. This streamlined provisioning is one of the leading selling points of SD-WAN.
Often when organizations adopt an SD-WAN they may:
Increased bandwidth requirements
A need for improved systems and network performance
A reliable and always-on network that can scale by location type
A need for better support/integration for Cloud-based applications like Salesforce or MS Teams
New locations are being added, including remote workers that also require integrated security
A requirement for upgraded Cybersecurity performance or posture
During this stage, bundled services can provide convenience for customers, simplifying their billing strategy along with their network management. New to Cloud, or revisiting their existing approach, there is always room to improve solution delivery to meet a customer’s evolving demand for simplicity, scalability, flexibility, low latency, and pervasive security.
SD-WAN technology automates and speeds up site deployments, configurations, operations, and troubleshooting tasks. It provides for automatic failover so, in the case of one link failure or congestion, traffic can be easily redirected to another link. SD-WAN’s flexible and agile nature empowers the best selection and utilization of connectivity, which can reduce upfront cost while also lowering operating expenses.
Saving Money is a Common, and Achievable, Refrain, when you look across the full cost – from gaining additional capabilities/performance (including WAN optimization), eliminating services/hardware that are no longer required, IT support costs, and economies from the bundling of services. The organization’s size, IT sophistication, and requirements will ultimately play the largest role in what solution(s) are adopted. Again, the equation is bigger than swapping one box for another, and should be viewed across the whole network ecosystem for both what the customer gains, and what they are able to eliminate.
Superior User Application Quality of Experience (QoEx). By identifying applications, SD-WAN provides intelligent application-aware routing across the full WAN. Each class of applications receives the appropriate QoS and security policy enforcement, all in accordance with the assigned intent that addresses business needs. You can even set the quality of service (QoS) thresholds that use public and private WAN traffic without sacrificing performance or security. Limit or prioritize as you see fit – like helping Salesforce functions hum, while putting the brakes on youtube cat videos.
Organizations that adopt SD-WAN, can combine network links serving one location into a single pool of capacity available for all applications and services. They can also customize bandwidth and connectivity to meet the needs of specific network services, locations, or users. Plus, as mentioned earlier, you gain the option to centrally define and manage policies and network traffic without requiring manual configuration at each device.
Pinpoint Benefits of SD-WAN
Enhance Flexibility/Scalability | Technology will continue to advance faster than organizations can adapt using traditional network systems. SD-WAN helps you scale network resources according to application needs and service demand, giving added control and agility.
Leverage the Cloud | Cloud-enabled application usage will continue to increase. SD-WAN helps you control traffic and prioritize key applications, keeping Cloud applications running smoothly and improving the end-user experience. See real-time optimized performance gains for Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce, and other SaaS (Security-as-a-Service) applications. Also, benefit from optimized workflows for Cloud platforms such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure.
Dynamic Traffic Routing | Responsively sends across different network paths based on changes in demand, application needs, and network quality. The pipes widen and contract when and where they need to!
Control Costs and Capital Expenditures | Add cost-effective broadband circuits to dedicated WAN circuits where needed, to the intelligent oversight to ensure traffic is sent along the wisest routes for speed and budget.
Improve Application Performance/Experience | Take advantage of application routing and path selection to use both public and private IP services together. Realize high availability, with predictable service, for all defined critical enterprise applications. SD-WAN also provides direct connectivity to SaaS providers. Plus, you may benefit from a fully meshed private core network, with multiple PoPs around the world, to mitigate the effect of latency on application performance.
ImproveUCaaS Performance | SD-WAN can recognize UCaaS (Unified Communications as-a-Service) traffic, optimize its routing to minimize packet loss and latency, and deliver the best possible user experience.
Simplify Operations | Centralized orchestration and automated provisioning allows for easy configuration – with simplified deployment, fewer human errors, and reduced management complexity. Detailed reporting of application and WAN performance for business analytics and bandwidth forecasting provides increased visibility into the network, letting organizations confidently make better decisions.
Network Security | Operate efficiently without sacrificing performance or security. Plus, the added layer of security SD-WAN provides through encrypting and tunneling traffic, even over public internet, adds an additional layer of security for all data. Application-aware policies with end-to-end segmentation and real-time access control makes information even more secure and allow customers the option to integrate threat protection and reduce their organization’s potential attack surface.
Enable Cloud Migration | SD-WAN simplifies Cloud migration by providing direct connectivity to leading IaaS providers, SaaS application acceleration, and multi-Cloud connectivity.
MPLS to SD-WAN Transition | SD-WAN can provide a seamless migration from MPLS (Multiprotocol Label Switching) – the technologies co-exist and work well together, allowing time to phase in the customer’s transition for optimal benefit and cost savings.
Improve/Enable International Connectivity | Extending a network around the world can be challenging. SD-WAN can deliver optimal coverage to key locations, supporting both inbound and outbound data.
Questions You Should Ask!
How far along is the customer in adopting Cloud?
How dispersed is the organization geographically?
What does their current network look like?
Are they under contract?
What are the primary objectives?
Legacy Network Replacement
Importance of additional service integrations with public clouds, UCaaS, Cybersecurity, Remote worker etc
Choosing SD-WAN Deployment Methods
SD-WAN deployment preferences will often depend on the performance needs of users and applications, the in-house team’s skillsets (if there is a team), and the customer’s capacity to build and manage the solution.
Internet-based SD-WAN, sometimes referred to as DIY, requires appliances at each company location, either behind or replacing routers as the branch connection to the enterprise network and internet. You can forward network traffic over legacy MPLS links or via the internet. Using the internet to complement MPLS provides a low-cost, flexible, and rapid deployment option – with the added benefit that it may be easier to connect users to other Cloud/SaaS applications. Public internet performance however can be unreliable/spotty over longer distances and in some parts of the world. Latency, packet loss, and jitter are inherent to the internet, and these issues can be aggravated with distance. Internet-based SD-WANs often require your customer’s internal IT staff to manage the WAN, and may require additional investment in WAN optimization, and other technologies to ensure a satisfactorily functioning network.
Telco or MSP Service SD-WAN, involves a service Provider installing and delivering connectivity, as well as any appliances the service may require. The managed SD-WAN is often a value-added service and may come with explicit Service Level Agreements (SLAs). These managed services are typically deployed using similar hardware as internet-based SD-WANs and may rely on public internet for access to Cloud/SaaS applications, with the same ramifications: application performance and user experience may suffer over greater distances. Additionally, the managed service provider may rely on hardware and software from one or more networking and security vendors, creating support handoff issues that diminish the overall experience.
Managed/Co-Managed SD-WAN as-a-Service (Cloud First WAN) positions SD-WAN as a Cloud service, using a consumption model. Instead of constructing the SD-WAN exclusively using the internet, these networks combine secure reliable private networks with the flexible, low-cost, and quick deployment aspects of the internet. Organizations can rely on a fast and secure private core network without having to build out a heavy infrastructure and manage additional hardware at the edge, making it simple to expand branch offices, or move locations, without compromising reliability, application performance, or security. Enabling faster connectivity through a global private network layered with WAN optimization can ensure seamless access and consistent performance anywhere in the world.
Watch the SD-WAN Conversation webinar on demand, hosted by Gerry Davis, SVP Sales Engineering and Eric Beller, SVP Sales and Complex Solutions.
Aryaka is a cloud-first SD-WAN company; their SmartServices platform offers connectivity, application acceleration, Security, Cloud networking, and insights that leverage global orchestration and provisioning. Aryaka is consistently rated in Gartner’s Voice of the Customer Surveys. With an optimized global network, a mesh of PoPs delivering amazing connectivity including China, Aryaka’s customers include hundreds of international enterprises including several Fortune 100 companies who can achive “LAN-like” best-in class application performance experience across their WAN wiith global 5×9 SLAs.
Cato Networks is a native Cloud carrier providing a revolutionary converged software stack providing managed SD-WAN and Security service. Cato has the largest independent global backbone with over 50 Points of Presence (PoPs), allowing them to optimize traffic end-to-end. Cato is a technology leader in Secure Access Service Edge (SASE). Cato empowers customers with the visibility and control they need to connect, secure, and run their networks with 24/7/365 Global NOC support. Cato optimizes all traffic end-to-end between users and applications, and protects all traffic with built-in security as a service with next-gen firewall capabilities.
Fusion Connect can help today’s modern organization’s hybrid workforces thrive. Fusion Connect manages, orchestrates, and secures the critical technology that enables the connected enterprise –tailoring highly available and secure cloud communication, collaboration, security, and network management platforms to meet the unique needs of mid-market and enterprise customers. Their AI-based management systems, along with their highly skilled technicians, dynamically ensure world-class application performance under any conditions. Fusion Connect leverages an all North American based IP-network and NOCs for live 24/7/365 monitoring and technical support.
WiredIQ is a technology company that works exclusively through the channel and provides a complete suite of managed services delivered in one intelligent appliance, the Brain Box. The Brain Box brings together SD-WAN, Managed IT Services, Security as a Service (SaaS), and Internet of Things (IoT) management onto one device, while maintaining PCI 3.0 and HIPAA compliance. Additionally, WiredIQ also offers a full suite of Unified Communications applications, a robust Contact Center offering, Broadband, and POTS. All WiredIQ applications can be offered à la carte. The All-in-One Brainbox is a separate application and is agnostic to specific phone systems.
Granite brings stability to both end-users and partners. Granite helps more than 2/3rds of Fortune 100 companies with their voice and data requirements. Granite’s core products include POTS, Epik (wireless POTS replacement), SIP, 7 different SD-WAN platform, Mobility and IoT, and managed services (SD-WAN, switches, firewalls, AP’s, circuits). With Granite, you can consolidate multiple vendors and invoices under a single national supplier that provides discounted service. This one-stop-shop platform allows your customers to focus on other business matters. One Company. One Bill. One Point of Contact. Granite’s scalability also allows organizations to grow with imminent demand.