Today companies must change to not only keep up with the competition, but to address the increased velocity that business demands. The increased intensity and pace we see in business, regardless of industry / sector, has caused a myriad of challenges including:

  • Maintaining a mix of rapidly changing applications, hosted internally and externally
  • Managing the costs of diverse requirements from both internal and external clients
  • Protecting and maintaining an evolving security posture
  • Transparent and secure tracking of user and application level activity
  • Streamlining configuration and vendor management
  • Providing cloud service agility and flexibility across all technologies

The Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) landscape has evolved at a break neck pace to meet many of the above challenges. Cloud service providers have provided enterprise customers, small, medium and large, the ability to shift from a CapEx model to an OpEx model.

One result of leveraging cloud more and more is the push to revisit the architecture of the network. The network component of IaaS within the “cloud era” area is the latest component that is being optimized through advances in software engineering.

As companies increase the use of Software-as-a-Sevice (SaaS) solutions – like SalesForce and Office365 – along with moving business apps to cloud providers link CenturyLink, AWS and Azure, customers need to ask, “How do I evolve my network to meet current application needs, yet have the flexibility to leverage additional SaaS applications and/or a take a multi-cloud strategy?”

This intersection between cloud and SDN (Software Defined Networking) provides the CIO, whose role has expanded to become a leading voice in business strategy, with the opportunity to leverage the two technologies – cloud and SDN – to realize competitive advantage and revenue growth.  Companies can now bring the flexibility and agility that the cloud provides to Software Defined Wide Area Networking (SD-WAN). This provides the visibility to meet demands, and adjust them as needed, whether that is in the cloud or at the network level to make sure customers are taken care of. For example: A retailer can make sure that their infrastructure can handle any increase in customer demand (i.e., Black Friday or Cyber Monday), allowing customers to acquire the goods and services they need, when they need it.  When combining cloud and SD-WAN customers gain the following benefits:

  • An optimized environment to meet end-user and application requirements
  • The reliability to ensure uptime and availability
  • Meet changing performance requirements in near real-time
  • Visibility – understand what is going on in all parts of the technology stack that supports the business
  • Greater agility and flexibility that provides the ability to make adjustments much more easily.

All of these benefits role up to one key benefit: Faster time to market that results in incremental revenue.

In a nutshell, by combining cloud, whether from a single cloud provider or taking a multi-cloud solution, with the ability to deploy in an automated and orchestrated with Runner and ElasticBox, layered upon a network that is dynamic and flexible, enterprises can create enormous competitive advantage in this 24x7xforever global economy.

To fully realize a competitive culture, clients can also leverage managed services on both the cloud and SD-WAN components, which frees up critical staff to focus on core business value actions, while leaving the support and maintenance of the status quo to fully trained and seasoned technicians.

For a deeper dive into the IaaS technology landscape and market drivers, download a complimentary copy of Gartner’s newest IaaS Magic Quadrant report.

Try CenturyLink Cloud and SD-WAN in your own IT environments today!

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