You are migrating workflows to the cloud, demand for WAN bandwidth keeps growing, you know you need to consider SD-WAN and you are trying to do all this whilst managing the network, without extra budget and without time to pause for thought. Sounds familiar? Here’s our Quick Start Guide to refreshing your WAN strategy in the age of Cloud, Hybrid and SD-WAN.
How is your business planning to grow over the next 3 years?
Is your business attacking new geographic markets, consolidating your place in your current markets, developing new revenue streams or trying to run more efficiently? Aligning your WAN strategy with your business needs will help you define the top priority for you: is it agility to enable new business models? Or cost savings in periods of consolidation? Or fast business enablement during geographic expansion?
Top tip: When your next tender comes up, be really, really clear what is important to you and what tangible improvements you are looking to see (faster turnaround for upgrades, better support, lower TCO etc). This will give new providers like Telia Carrier a great chance of helping you achieve those goals.
What is your 3-year cloud and IT infrastructure target?
Are you targeting your migration to one major cloud ecosystem or multiple (not counting the multitude of SaaS and IaaS, just where your main workflows will be)? How many legacy app will still be in on-prem or in data centres? Who will still be using them and how? What does that mean for your data flows? How will your Dev and DevOps team access their environments? How fast will your IT go to zero-trust?
Top tip: Now is the time to look at your site architecture & topology, refreshing your WAN and bringing SD-WAN to the mix is a great time to review and harmonise you site categorisation based on what they need today and in 3 years. It will also help you in setting up and managing SD-WAN profiles and data flows. Do all the sites need the same connectivity? Define your site tiering by business criticality and their needs for availability and diversity, MPLS, cloud direct connectivity and whether DIA or standard business broadband will be enough. Most companies work with between 3 and 5 tiers for larger networks.
What is the right management model and how does it support my 3-year evolution?
When is your connectivity contract coming to an end? Do you want to separate the overlay from the underlay or would you rather have one person do both for you? Do you want to do a big bang SD-WAN change or do you want to manage that gradually? Once you have site topology & access sorted, how can you get service flexibility to support your evolution?
Top tip: Now is also the time to think about how much you want to manage our SD-WAN implementation yourself.
If your topology and policy rules are simple and your local offices / operations can manage local networks, then it may be worth looking at a DIY version of SD-WAN or a version with only an overlay provider.
Do any of these apply to you?
- You want centralised helpdesk, support and trouble-shooting for both overlay and underlay
- You have offices in multiple locations and countries where staff are not ready to manage the local access or the equipment
- You wonder how many more partners you can practically manage and optimise with the same amount of people
Then you should look at a bringing in a service provider who will manage connectivity, local access, SD-WAN CPEs and start up profiles.
Telia Carrier can do all of this and support a smooth evolution by spinning SD-WAN instances on your routers, letting you change when you and your business are ready.
Are you interested to learn more about our SD-WAN offering? Click here.