Software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) is being embraced by companies in a variety of industries, including banking, healthcare, retail, and manufacturing. Many enterprises that haven’t yet taken the step of implementing the technology are considering it because they’ve heard of its many benefits.
There are several reasons SD-WAN is included for consideration in digital transformation plans across countless enterprises:
- SD-WAN makes it possible to prioritize internet traffic, sending less-critical data over broadband while multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) is reserved for critical, proprietary data transfers.
- The technology offers a high level of visibility, with a central control hub for IT personnel to manage network settings.
- SD-WAN provides businesses with the ability to get a new branch online and connected to company resources quickly.
- It offers significant potential for cost reduction; like other cloud services, it is offered in a subscription pay model that can be categorized as operating expenses, versus a capital investment.
SD-WAN offers a lot of benefits, but enterprises considering it may still have some reservations. It’s wise to fully examine the providers being considered and ask a few key questions:
- Are you a services provider, or a reseller of SD-WAN?
- Can you provide examples of companies you’ve worked with that are similar in size and scope to our project?
- What level of support can we expect after deployment is finished?
- Where are you located? Will there be someone on-site to help us if we encounter a problem during deployment?
Even if these questions are answered satisfactorily, there may still be a few lingering reservations about implementing SD-WAN:
- My existing hardware is still being depreciated, so am I still locked in? Your SD-WAN provider can likely integrate the technology with existing systems. SD-WAN can be used in tandem with your routers until depreciation is complete.
- I’m receiving some discounts by bundling services, so what will that do to my costs? Bundling can save some money, but once you implement cloud services, you may find that you’re missing out on the flexibility to access the telecom resources you want in each location. You may be limited in reducing costs even further.
- What if I’m leery of being locked in with one provider?
Check to see which providers your vendor works with on a regular basis, and verify that you have options to switch to a provider that works better for your business needs.
At Truth Comm, our approach to SD-WAN is to evaluate the challenges you are looking to remedy and help you find real-world examples of how you can overcome those with our various providers. Contact us today for an appointment.