Top 8 Business Cases for Implementing SD-WAN
Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) has seen rapid adoption in 2023 and we expect that trend to continue as IT teams seek enhanced security, scalability, as well as support for multi-cloud. In a way, SD-WAN is revolutionizing corporate networks.
SD-WAN is an advanced networking approach designed to enhance the efficiency and performance of traditional Wide Area Networks (WANs). By leveraging software-defined networking (SDN) principles, SD-WAN provides a more dynamic, flexible, and cost-effective way to manage and optimize network traffic across various locations. It allows businesses to route traffic more intelligently, prioritize critical applications, and improve overall network reliability and security. SD-WAN’s adaptability makes it particularly suitable for organizations with multiple branch offices or those increasingly reliant on cloud services and IoT connectivity. Its capability to integrate with diverse transport technologies, such as MPLS, broadband, and cellular networks, offers unparalleled flexibility and scalability, catering to the evolving needs of modern businesses.
Now that you are up to speed on the basics, let’s dive into the top 8 business cases for adopting SD-WAN in corporate environments.
1. Enhanced Network Performance and Reliability:
- SD-WAN’s intelligent path selection and load balancing capabilities ensure that critical applications get the bandwidth they need.
- Dynamic routing helps reduce network congestion, bottlenecks, and latency, leading to a more responsive network.
- Real-time monitoring and automatic adjustment of network traffic contribute to consistent network performance across various locations.
2. Cost Savings:
- SD-WAN allows businesses to use cost-effective internet connections, reducing reliance on expensive MPLS links.
- It reduces the need for costly hardware at each branch office, lowering capital expenditures.
- Enhanced network efficiency means less bandwidth wastage, further decreasing operational costs.
- Gartner reports up to 90% operational savings when switching from traditional router-based WANs to SD-WAN.
3. Increased Bandwidth and Flexibility:
- SD-WAN provides greater bandwidth by efficiently using multiple WAN connections.
- It offers flexibility in using different transport options like MPLS, broadband, and cellular, which is crucial for connecting remote or branch offices.
- This flexibility is vital for businesses needing to adapt quickly to changing demands or network conditions.
4. Improved Security:
- SD-WAN supports advanced security features like next-generation firewalls, encryption, and zero-trust architecture.
- It enables more detailed security policies and network segmentation, which limits access based on user roles and protects against cyber threats.
- Zone-based firewalls in SD-WAN allow for role-specific network access, enhancing security, especially for IoT devices and various business operations.
5. Cloud Integration and IoT Connectivity:
- SD-WAN improves cloud application performance by providing efficient cloud on-ramps for services like AWS, Microsoft Azure, and others.
- It secures traffic to and from IoT devices and supports rapid onboarding of a large number of diverse IoT devices.
- This is particularly beneficial for businesses increasingly relying on cloud services and IoT deployments.
6. Simplified Network Management:
- SD-WAN simplifies the management of complex WANs, especially those involving hybrid cloud and on-premise infrastructures.
- It offers centralized control over the entire network, regardless of the underlying infrastructure.
- This centralized management reduces the complexity of handling different cloud services and makes network administration more efficient.
7. Scalability and Agility for Organizational Changes:
- SD-WAN allows for rapid scaling and adaptation to changes like opening new locations or accommodating remote employees.
- Its software and virtualized networking capabilities mean that configuration and management can be done remotely, significantly reducing the time and resources needed for network adjustments.
- This makes SD-WAN a suitable solution for businesses undergoing digital transformation or expansion.
8. Enhanced User Experience and Productivity:
- SD-WAN improves the user experience, particularly for remote workers, by ensuring seamless and secure application access.
- It prioritizes business-critical applications and traffic, reducing jitter and packet loss in voice and video communications, thus enhancing productivity.
- The technology’s ability to prioritize and efficiently allocate resources enhances the overall performance of network-dependent applications and services.
From improved network performance to enhanced security and cost savings, SD-WAN represents a significant upgrade over traditional WAN technologies, particularly for businesses with complex network requirements or those undergoing digital transformations. Contact us to learn how SD-WAN can benefit your network.