Enterprises dealing with the complexity of cloud solutions are turning to software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) to address areas like security vulnerability, increased bandwidth demands and a need for better visibility and control. The traditional hub-and-spoke network design is no longer relevant, and using SD-WAN modernizes the network approach and brings with it a number of benefits.
One of those benefits is reduced costs. Driving down networking costs is often the topic that introduces SD-WAN into the consideration of business organizations. You may wonder if it’s really possible to achieve the savings of 40% off their WAN costs as you’ve heard. Before you jump in to implement SD-WAN, consider some of the factors that impact cost:
Replacing MPLS: Multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) is a reliable, secure pathway that’s been around for decades, but as businesses ratchet up their bandwidth demand, it can become a costly way to transmit data. This is particularly true when the transmission doesn’t require real-time connectivity and it could just as easily travel on a public internet link.
For some enterprises, the role of MPLS is all but eliminated, because the company can choose to optimize traffic in ways that support its most critical applications in real-time pathways with prioritization policies.
MPLS can be costly, and organizations may find there’s not much argument for holding onto these pathways when SD-WAN can help them automatically route traffic to the best links.
SLA Agreements: One area to handle with care is the issue of service level agreements (SLAs). You might think you’re getting a great deal on your SD-WAN solution, but if an interruption is going to result in lengthy downtime because of an SLA that doesn’t deliver much assistance, you’ll regret these cost savings. You can weigh the cost of your SLA with the cost of downtime to help you arrive at a solution that comes with the right service.
Soft Savings: Some of the savings to your WAN environment may be harder to quantify but they impact your organization nonetheless. Zero-touch provisioning, for instance, means your network staff won’t need to travel out to a new branch location to bring them online. They’ll simply plug in a device that comes with self-implementation and they’ll be on your network.
SD-WAN also allows you to prevent the kinds of costly breaches that can seriously hobble a business organization. With network segmentation, it’s easy to identify and isolate a threat, protecting the rest of your network from penetration.
SD-WAN also introduces new levels of agility, making it easy to add a new application to your network. Line-of-business managers are no longer forced to wait for their project to claim time and resources from IT. Business decisions that include a tech action plan can be implemented immediately, delivering quick returns and other benefits.
Wondering whether SD-WAN is right for your organization? At Access Tech, we leverage the right SD-WAN solution to meet your bandwidth needs while also minding your budget requirements. Contact us today to learn more.