Top 9 WAN Customer Care-abouts

Enabling the Cloud-first Branch

As the leading independent SD-WAN solution provider, Silver Peak has now helped more than 600 customers deploy solutions that address cloud-first enterprise challenges. This paper describes what customers have told us are the Top 9 benefits or “care-abouts” that an application-driven, Unity EdgeConnect SD-WAN has provided to their businesses. Digital transformation initiatives are driving IT spending across a multitude of emerging technologies including IoT, big data, machine learning, analytics and security technologies. According to Nemertes Research data, up to 80% of employees and customers are served from branch offices. Thus, a poor WAN architecture that has not been not designed and optimized for the cloud first and potentially a cloud-only branch, can be a barrier to digital transformation.

As more applications are being hosted and accessed from the cloud, the cloud plays a key role in enabling the transformational process for the digital business. But at the same time, traffic pattern shifts, the demand for more bandwidth and increased reliance on broadband are challenging traditional routercentric WAN architectures as they are not suited or designed for the cloud-first branch. In addition, the speed of application provisioning/de-provisioning combined with increasing application performance consistency and availability, and security become critical. These challenges are pressuring IT to rethink their WAN architectures and find the right SD-WAN solution that can help them accelerate digital transformation.

To accelerate digital transformation and minimize potential delays, the new SD-WAN solution must address the following Top 9 customer “care-abouts” when delivering applications to users. Enterprises may view or rank these care-abouts differently depending on their industry. For example, security is key across the board but may rank higher for industries like banking and healthcare who must adhere to government regulations such as PCI DSS or HIPPA to be compliant. Alternatively, application performance and availability might rank highest for a highly transactional retail business.

Let’s look at how the Silver Peak Unity EdgeConnect SD-WAN solution addresses these top 9 customer care-abouts:

Customer Care-about

Silver Peak Capabilities

Business Value

1. Accelerate Access to Cloud-based Apps (SaaS and IaaS)

  • Improve SaaS application performance by intelligently and dynamically breaking out internet traffic on an app-by-app basis based on business intent.
  • Accelerate access to SaaS apps based on the optimal egress point of hubs/branch offices to cloud centers optimizing routes
  • Enable customers to embrace a multi-cloud strategy with certified IaaS solutions on Microsoft Azure, AWS and Oracle Cloud marketplace

Improve business productivity

2. Improve Application Availability, Performance and Optimize Bandwidth

  • Correct for lost and out-of-order packets to achieve private line-like performance over any combination of transports including consumer broadband
  • Deliver higher bandwidth and resiliency by aggregating multiple links and providing a single, high performance logical connection
  • Overcome the effects of high latency with fully integrated, optional on-demand WAN optimization

Enhance end user experience

3. Improve WAN Resiliency

  • Eliminate single points of failure to provide always-on traffic across LAN, WAN and the SD-WAN appliance with a resilient HA cluster architecture
  • Create virtual tunnels across multiple physical WAN links with sub-second failover in event of link failure or brownout
  • Provide the highest level of resiliency while ensuring design simplicity via an intelligent software stack

Increase business uptime

4. Ensure Consistent App Security and Maintain Compliance

Accelerate time-to-problem resolution

5. Provide Advanced Visibility, Control, and Enable Faster Troubleshooting

  • Quickly identify causes of potential outages with real-time, granular visibility into application and network performance (loss, latency, jitter) with a centralized health map
  • Run historical reports to analyze bandwidth cost savings, device status, usage statistics and WAN metrics
  • Gain an accurate picture of cloud-based SaaS and IaaS app usage within the organization, traffic patterns and WAN service usage to assure security and compliance and accelerate troubleshooting

Accelerate time-to-problem resolution

6. Simplify WAN Architecture and Accelerate Branch Deployments

Accelerate time-to-problem resolution

7. Improve Automation

  • Automate the translation of defined business intent policies centrally and push them to all branches with a single command
  • Orchestrate and automate the deployment of consolidated network functions that include SD-WAN, routing, WAN optimization and stateful firewall with simple clicks
  • Manage, configure, report and maintain branch office network services with a single pane-of-glass orchestrator

Accelerate time-to-problem resolution

8. Integrate Seamlessly with Existing WAN Infrastructure

  • Enable flexible deployment models that can integrate with existing branch routers as in-line or out-of-path and overtime remove the unnecessary routers
  • Preserve WAN services investments while fully optimizing available bandwidth capacity resulting in tremendous savings on purchasing additional bandwidth
  • Integrate broadband securely with encrypted tunnels and simplified service chaining to third-party security services

Accelerate time-to-problem resolution

9. Reduce Cost

  • Augment or replace existing MPLS circuits with lower-cost broadband by sending traffic direct-to-net without backhauling to headquarters
  • Minimize the costs to migrate to an advanced SD-WAN architecture with flexible deployment (physical, virtual, cloud-based) options and integration with existing WAN infrastructure
  • Move to a thin branch that simplifies WAN architecture and minimizes required IT resources to operate
  • Simplify ongoing operations with a centralized single pane-of-glass orchestrator
  • Eliminate the high cost of deploying a separate WAN optimization solution with optional integrated WAN optimization that can be applied on an application or site basis

Increase ROI

In Summary

Organizations embracing digital transformation across industries will see improved efficiencies in operations, improved customer and user experience, and create new revenue streams. An intelligent branch WAN edge is an enabler for such transformation, and SD-WAN is a critical component. A complete SD-WAN solution that is easy-to-use and application-driven must address application performance, availability and security and network complexity and resiliency. Some examples include segmenting applications and securing point-of-sale (POS) transactions to minimize attacks or data breach in a retail industry; or a services business enhancing application performance for better-quality user-experience. The Silver Peak EdgeConnect SD-WAN solution empowers an enterprise’s digital experience while reducing risk and lowering operational costs.

  • Performance: As enterprises continue to leverage and migrate to public cloud to accelerate business presence and application deployment, ensuring predictable performance over broadband becomes critical to enhance user experience. EdgeConnect minimizes packet retransmission, overcomes the effects of latency and maintains application performance even during a DDoS attack. Furthermore, EdgeConnect identifies traffic on first packet, enabling secure internet breakout for the best SaaS and IaaS performance.
  • Resilience: Application availability is a must for cloud-first enterprise branches as they embrace digital transformation and become an intelligent edge for processing data closer to connected devices and customers. EdgeConnect ensures no single point of failure across LAN or WAN as all links and devices are active, providing seamless extension of application policies with a simplified architecture.
  • Security: As applications become more distributed and are consumed from public and private clouds, EdgeConnect isolates applications via segmentation to minimize surface attacks, simplifies service chaining to third-party firewalls for further inspection, and provides consistent policy with unified management no matter where the applications reside help to minimize threats.
  • Networking: Connecting users to applications while maintaining quality of experience is the primary goal of networking. As enterprises expand to new locations, embrace the cloud, upgrade networks, merge and acquire companies, EdgeConnect streamlines the WAN infrastructure, simplifies route announcement and builds IPsec tunnels automatically, speeding time-to-revenue.
  • Ease-of-use: Enterprises must respond quickly to business needs as they embrace digital transformation to remain competitive. Therefore, a simple, easy-to-use WAN management model is a must. With centralized management from a single screen for deployment and on-going operations via Unity Orchestrator, IT can easily and quickly deploy, manage and troubleshoot the SD-WAN with a few simple clicks. This not only simplifies WAN management operations, but also minimizes QoS or security policy conflicts as a result of human errors. In addition, the north-bound RESTful API facilitates integration with orchestration tools like OpenStack for orchestrating the broader infrastructure environment.

Whether it's an institution in the banking industry trying to secure and minimize data breaches, or a retailer securing point-of-sale (POS) transactions, or a healthcare clinic securing patient data when connecting to other institutions, or a services business enhancing application performance again better-quality user-experience, the Silver Peak EdgeConnect SD-WAN solution empowers an enterprise’s digital experience while reducing risk and operational cost.