Following the onset of the worldwide pandemic, more than 40% of companies have embraced hybrid working arrangements. As employees relish the flexibility of hybrid working, it is imperative for employers to guarantee that their connectivity can meet the associated demands. A viable approach for businesses to achieve this objective is through the adoption of Software Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) technology.
If a business has poor internet connectivity, it will not meet the demands of remote working which usually involves multiple sites. This will lead to a subpar employee experience because the limited bandwidth won’t cope with the increasing demands from the network.
SD-WAN can help boost your private network versatility in a way which supports remote and hybrid working, which is becoming an increasingly popular choice amongst businesses.
Whether your organisation is hoping to deploy SD-WAN in the near future, or is simply weighing up its options, there are many benefits to consider that you should be aware of. But before we go into the benefits, let’s first clarify a common misconception:
SD-WAN vs. MPLS
A common misconception is that SD-WAN may replace traditional Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) WAN solutions, but this is not necessarily the case.
MPLS is a secure high speed, low latency method of data transport which SD-WAN, as with other forms of internet connectivity, can be integrated with and complement.
SD-WAN’s role is to deliver more hands-on control of your network, allowing you to steer traffic to business applications effectively, across the connectivity that is available to you. This can all be achieved regardless of whether you are a direct internet access (DIA) customer or MPLS customer.
Now that we’ve cleared up this misconception, let’s take a look at the benefits of SD-WAN for hybrid and remote working.
1. SD-WAN Adds An Additional Layer of Security
Applying a SD-WAN solution to your existing connectivity set up allows your business to apply security policies on a site by site basis. It notifies you of any potential security threats so you can mitigate them, all via a single platform, saving you from having to log into multiple systems.
While SD-WAN doesn’t change the type of risks businesses face such as malware, viruses and Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS), It does introduce a sufficient way of managing and monitoring your IT infrastructure to proactively detect and mitigate such risks.
If you are looking to improve your network visibility, get in touch with M247 where we can develop a SD-WAN solution with your business growth in mind.
2. SD-WAN is Cost Effective
Investing in SD-WAN doesn’t need to be a drain on your time, resources and personnel. In fact, companies adopting SD-WAN saw their cost reduced by an astonishing 84%.
With SD-WAN, the benefit of having a centralised management system helps to increase operational efficiencies, providing optimised network and system capabilities, ultimately achieving a substantial cost saving.
Plus, if your business does not have the capacity to manage a SD-WAN system in-house, you can pay a service provider to look after it for a competitive rate.
And when you look at how SD-WAN can help your business manage and sustain hybrid or remote working, it will also greatly reduce time and money spent on office spaces.
3. SD-WAN Future-Proofs Your Business
With hybrid and remote working now becoming the norm, more businesses will look at different tools to improve online collaboration, with Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) seeing more opportunities.
Your business can use VR and AR to deliver an interactive staff training experience. Or if you’re a business in retail, you can use AR to deliver a “try-before-you-buy” experience. Paint brand Dulux, for example, was one of the first manufacturers to create an app for customers to see how a paint colour will look in their home.
Plus, VR and AR can significantly improve remote collaboration. Like car manufacturer Honda, they’re utilising VR technology for their engineers to remotely collaborate and share designs during product development.
Even though it is early days for VR and AR adoption, SD-WAN enables you to scale your IT infrastructure and incorporate the latest internet of things (IoT) to your network.
4. Works With Any Network
SD-WAN is transport-agnostic, which means regardless of the team’s internet service provider or how they receive their internet, whether it’s through LAN, 4G/5G or broadband, your business’s data will be prioritised to ensure top performance. It also works alongside a Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) network which is used for multi-branch businesses.
This is a big benefit for remote working as each of your team members will not have the same internet connectivity for a multitude of reasons. And by being transport agnostic, you ensure your systems, applications and data is widely available to your team, no matter where they are.
To find out how SD-WAN can integrate with your existing network setup, contact us today where we’ll review your existing network and come up with a bespoke solution to meet your requirements.
5. Better Application Accessibility
SD-WAN ensures your applications are continuously up-and-running at all times. Thanks to its failover capabilities, if one of your application’s links stops working, it will quickly generate another link to ensure your application is available at all times.
So if your team uses Sage 200, Dexterity, Oracle or any server based applications, a SD-WAN implementation ensures you have reliable and secure access to them.
Plus, thanks to its centralised management and security policy, it is easy to manage and deploy all your applications across multiple sites.
Now That You Know The Business Benefits of SD-WAN, Make Sure You Pick The Right Vendor
Implementing Software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) for remote working offers numerous business benefits that can greatly enhance productivity and efficiency. With the increasing trend of hybrid and remote work options, businesses must adapt to meet the demands of a flexible workforce.
By embracing SD-WAN, businesses can create a robust and adaptable network infrastructure that supports remote working, boosts employee productivity, and ultimately contributes to overall business success. With the growing trend towards remote work arrangements, SD-WAN becomes an increasingly essential tool for modern organisations aiming to remain competitive and efficient in today’s dynamic business landscape.
At M247, we specialise in building and managing high performance networks to suit businesses of every size and type. With our expertise and commitment to delivering quality bespoke solutions for every client, we’re the partner you need to help your business grow.
For more information about M247 solutions, contact us today.