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As reliance on the cloud increases, we must embrace the force…of SD WAN

Cheesy Star Wars puns aside, the evolution of the mobile workforce and day-to-day business being conducted on a global scale means that your tech needs to be connected to your, or any network, regardless of where we are.

SD-WAN, or ‘Software Defined – Wide Area Network’ is the new kid on the block when it comes to cloud connectivity and internet access. The original WAN architecture supported our basic needs when we all worked out of the same office, much was still paper-based and we met clients in the same room.

These days WAN is simply not keeping up with requirements and is proving costly as companies and organisations go through update after update or try to maintain its relevance as they expand team numbers or to satellite offices.

SD WAN is much more than a money-saving exercise, it can revolutionise how business is conducted by cutting out the reliance companies have on hardware, cabling and fixed network datacentres.

IT managers need network control and transparency with immediate and real-time insight into performance levels and the adaptability to support the demands users will place on the network, which is why more and more are making the switch.

Many companies and organisations are undergoing digital transformation strategies which look beyond WAN systems in order to cope with multi-channel conferencing, multi-office set ups and the shareability of files across teams. SD WAN is seen as the most viable solution.

This technology is allowing companies to empower employees and optimise business processes with greater levels of flexibility, customer engagement and innovation while streamlining resources into a single cohesive network.

How does it do this? Rather than being a replacement for WAN, it becomes a conduit that seeks out the most efficient and relevant WAN connections that correlate directly to business function, effectively avoiding the noise and interference from casual consumer traffic.

This prioritising of the right traffic tunes the network for the benefit of the user and manager alike with next-generation reporting also able to track and analyse end-to-end application performance in real time, so the network can react to any changes. This is a welcome change to that which has gone before, usually in the form of a monthly round up of bandwidth use or what applications have been used the most, not the most effective system for IT teams trying to stay one step ahead of issues.

Most IT managers will already be aware of SD WAN yet will be lacking a full understanding of the benefits it can deliver for their organisation. SD WAN does not represent the Dark Side of telecoms, more a New Hope in how organisations can embrace the new technology available. We are still working on Rainbow branded lightsabers…watch this space.

The Rainbow Tech Team is delivering an ‘Innovation in Communication’ seminar at Belfast’s Grand Central Hotel on Friday, 21stSeptember to showcase this newest service capability. For more information visit http://www.rainbowcomms.com/2018/06/25/innovation-communications-event/

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