How Software Defined WAN (SD-WAN) Can Help Your Business

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Nov 6, 2016

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The software-defined wide-area network (SD-WAN) is used to connect enterprise networks over lengthy geographic distances. This technology, which is a specific application of software-defined networking (SDN), can link branch offices with central corporate networks, as well as data centers separated by long distance.

While it has yet to be widely adopted by enterprises, it will be. Gartner estimates that 30 percent of enterprises will have deployed SD-WAN technology by 2019.

With awareness and adoption of SD-WAN on the rise, you should be taking notice. Your company can benefit from deploying this great technology, and here’s why.

How SD-WAN Works

The way SD-WAN technology works provides significant advantages to WAN. Traditional WAN technologies involve installation of proprietary hardware or expensive fixed circuits. WAN infrastructure is quite complex, consisting of routers, firewalls, WAN optimizers, WAN path controllers and other components.

SD-WAN takes out much of the hardware, offering connectivity and services through the cloud. It delivers unified communications and data applications through integration of multiple connection types, like broadband internet, Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS), and Long-Term Evolution (LTE). SD- WAN also integrates the entire WAN into a single interface, which makes handling issues in the network easier.

Overall, the goal of SD-WAN is simplification and the creation of a real-time data network without as much physical networking. The end idea is that, after deployment of SD-WAN devices, setting up the technology would be as easy as setting up Wi-Fi.

How SD-WAN Can Save You Money

By transitioning to SD-WAN, enterprises can reduce dependency on expensive MPLS connectivity. SD-WAN involves the creation of a virtual WAN overlay, which means customers don’t have to overhaul existing WAN investments. Rather, they can obtain quality WAN access by any available data service (LTE, broadband or MPLS).

How does this equal savings? Instead of having to pay the high dollars of legacy MPLS services, customers can replace or supplement bandwidth with inexpensive, widely available broadband connections.

With SD-WAN, branches can now be connected with any form of internet. This enhances network agility and optimizes the entire operation. Thanks to this, connectivity decisions can now be made independent of carriers, helping enterprises avoid lengthy procurement delays (which allows for faster branch deployment times).

Once connected, SD-WAN fabric provides enterprises visibility into the centralized data center and cloud traffic. Each branch has a direct connection to the applications that are being used. This optimizes application performance. Not only do you save time and resources, you can also make better decisions.

In short, cloud-based SD-WAN offers incredible agility and speed. Installation, maintenance and monthly subscription fees are all cheaper than traditional WAN. Clearly, it’s the network technology of the future for enterprises.

Field Engineer Can Help You Deploy SD-WAN Devices

Unlike MPLS, which takes three to nine months to install, SD-WAN is incredibly agile architecture. It only takes one to seven days to install, allowing you to get up and running quickly.

Since SD-WAN is easier to set up and maintain, you don’t want to hire full-time IT employees to deploy devices. Because they may not have as much work to do after deployment is complete. That will cost your business much more money (which is part of the reason you’re setting up SD-WAN).

Rather, you should employ freelance field engineers. Field Engineer, a platform for hiring freelance telecom technicians, can provide workers quickly and at scale anywhere in the world.

By hiring field engineers from Field Engineer on a temporary basis, you can reduce your business’ overhead for your SD-WAN deployment project–without having to sacrifice quality. That’s because you can select engineers based on the qualifications and experience you require.

In the end, with Field Engineer, you get the skilled labor you need at a reasonable cost, while the workers get the freedom, flexibility and pay they deserve. That’s win-win for everyone.

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