The Backbone of Your Business: Managed Services
How to ensure that your network is equal to any task
Your network. It’s one of the most fundamental and crucial elements of IT infrastructure—and also one of the most complex to manage. Organizations spend vast sums and countless hours ensuring that their networks are stable, reliable and secure. Network engineers painstakingly design and create an optimal architecture to deliver the right mix of flexibility, performance and availability. They debate which management suite provides the best monitoring and control capabilities. And then, almost as soon as the work is implemented, it feels like someone finds a better way, a newer technology or a just-discovered vulnerability that must be guarded against.
You’re not alone in experiencing that feeling. The world is in the middle of one of the most significant network transformations since the internet became widely adopted. Abstract terms like “Internet of Things,” “Edge to Core” or “Hybrid Cloud” abound, but behind the new lingo lies the simple fact that any conversation about digital transformation is also a conversation about network transformation. How do we ensure that our edges can talk to our cores efficiently and securely over an ever-expanding network? How does cloud plus data center become a fully enabled hybrid IT strategy? With a well-designed, robust network connecting them.
The complexity of interdependencies between various technologies is expanding exponentially. Once upon a time, data and services were centrally located and pushed to the remote office or branch office sites in a fairly one-directional consumption model. This system was predicated on simple connectivity, with the periodic upload of fresh inputs—be they sales receipts, inventory and shipping logs or other raw data points. Increasingly, however, the prevalence of AI-driven decision-making at the edge and the explosion in data generation has forced a change. Full-time, bidirectional or matrixed connectivity is required to support real-time analytics, data propagation and streaming services, all of which have uptime and performance demands that are greater than ever before.
From smart cities or wearable health devices to gaming and entertainment, enabling today’s edge, near-edge and multi-location services requires a flexible and secure architecture capable of managing the larger volumes of data generated at and delivered to the edge. And these needs are only going to increase as more devices and data enter the ecosystem—thus driving the search for stronger, more powerful and uncompromisingly reliable network options.
What exactly does that kind of network look like? The first place to look is at a service’s actual backbone. Speed is non-negotiable. Scalability is also critical because usage demands can vary significantly from business to business, and even within a single organization. Size is important because more carrier access points, on-net carrier access and peering points enable you to be one hop away from a secure, reliable network virtually anywhere. However, the physical network itself is only a part of the value that network providers can offer to your business.
Another core factor is the suite of services offered. What level of uptime commitment and protection is available—and at what cost? Is there a portfolio of interconnection services? The right partner can help alleviate many of the burdens of network management, from strategic assistance in vendor management (both carriers and hardware providers) to patching and security, to overtaxed IT staff. That combination—a robust physical network of data center infrastructure plus supportive team members that enable increased in-house productivity, security and stability—is what will deliver the highest value to your company.
Considering the rate of change in the networking space today and the constant push to innovate, freeing up time and capacity for in-house IT team members offers a significant advantage to many businesses. Managed network services from a reputable provider such as Flexential are the perfect way for organizations to do just that. By leveraging the right outside expertise, you will be able to focus your time, efforts and budgets to greater impact within your business, while remaining confident that your network needs remain the highest priority of a highly skilled team.