Digital transformation is a hot topic heading into 2020, as companies are increasingly embracing new technologies to solve a variety of business challenges.
There are a few important things to keep in mind about digital transformation. First and foremost, adoption can vary from company to company. Some companies have informal digital transformation projects, while other companies have highly advanced, and structured projects. In fact, some companies may be using digital transformation without even realizing it. Altogether, about 34 percent of companies claim to have a digital transformation program in place.
What’s more, digital transformation is a massive area of focus, which can have different connotations across teams and industries. For example, digital transformation in a contact center can mean leveraging cloud solutions and VoIP to improve customer service. Digital transformation in manufacturing environment could typically refers to IoT devices, sensors, and automation systems to control production.
We can also apply digital transformation to the network. Many companies are now exploring ways to augment or migrate away from fixed MPLS connections in favor of software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN).
Let’s explore how SD-WAN aligns with digital transformation—and we’ll show how it can be a major revenue driver for service providers.
SD-WAN: An overview
SD-WAN separates the underlying networking hardware from its control mechanism. This makes it possible to establish simple yet powerful virtual networks that can be easily managed and controlled from a centralized location.
A business can use SD-WAN to establish secure, reliable, flexible, and cost-effective connectivity across any global branch. SD-WAN involves aggregating connections from multiple service providers, guaranteeing maximum QoS even in remove areas that lack strong last-mile connectivity and delivering seamless failover even to wireless connections to maintain business continuity.
Service providers, meanwhile, can offer customers white-label SD-WAN from a vendor like Multapplied which grants full control over pricing, marketing, and policy management. Providers can use a white label SD-WAN solution to provide incredible connectivity, in turn providing better services while driving greater revenue in the process.
How SD-WAN Can Enable Digital Transformation
Now that we’ve explained a bit how SD-WAN works, we can highlight some ways that it helps enable digital transformation.
As we mentioned, there is the software-defined element to consider. Businesses can abandon expensive and inflexible networking hardware for a multi-functional box that gets placed at each branch location. This allows businesses to make quick adjustments without having to rip and replace infrastructure. SD-WAN, it should be noted, is highly scalable and perfect for growing organizations.
Beyond the networking element, here are 3 key ways that SD-WAN can support digital transformation:
- Better-performing services: Businesses can use SD-WAN to support digital technologies like VoIP, IoT deployments, and business productivity apps. Using SD-WAN, companies can establish fast and reliable connectivity for next-gen services and bring all their branches, sites or locations on-net to corporate applications, while increasing their ability to monitor and control application performance and end-user experience at each site.
- Uptime and availability: Once a business makes the decision to move forward with digital transformation, the network becomes the foundation of the enterprise. Critical processes will depend on uptime and availability in order to function, driving the need for seamless failover. And since SD-WAN involves aggregating multiple connections at each site from multiple ISP, this ensures that the network will remain up and running even if a local provider experiences an outage.
- A digital-first mindset: In an enterprise environment, SD-WAN becomes one piece of the larger digital transformation puzzle. Moving to a software-driven, virtual network could open the door for more digital technologies to follow. That’s because digital transformation is as much a mindset as it is a strategy. As employees see more digital solutions making their way into the enterprise, and experience the benefits of gaining control and visibility to their networks while improving Return on Investment, they in turn become more open to experimenting with new ways of operating the business.
The key takeaway here is that SD-WAN and digital transformation can be a powerful combination. These are two major buzzwords heading into 2020, and both are in high demand at the enterprise level. And if you take the white label approach, you can retain full control over how you want to bring your solution to market.
Want to learn more about how SD-WAN can help your business? To get started, contact the team today.