When Network Stability and Industry Disruption Go Hand in Hand

Give clients central network monitoring points and robust security to aid their digital drive.

June 19, 2023

4 Min Read
Network stability and industry disruption

By Richard Vidil


GTT’s Richard Vidil

For many in the channel space, the past several years of change and disruption have necessitated a dramatic acceleration of their customers’ cloud migration and digitization plans. Many businesses needed to build scale and flexibility into digital infrastructures to account for the changing way people live and work.

This challenge, however, also presented a significant opportunity to find new markets and outpace competition. And while there are many buzzy technologies customers may pursue in a bid to outflank their rivals, what underpins them is a robust and flexible network. Without that, customers may lack the backbone to support their wider digital transformation goals.

Maximizing the Power of the Network

In these times of disruption, we must determine what network differentiators customers really want. Two things that constantly stand out in my discussions with customers are flexibility and security.

Let’s tackle flexibility first. For industries facing ongoing disruption, the ability to continually update and iterate is a critical element of progress. A strong example of this can be seen within the manufacturing sector.

A recent IDC and GTT joint study showed manufacturers often deploy SD-WAN software for its speed in managing technology upgrades. More than one-third (38%) of manufacturers cited faster network deployment as a primary driver for SD-WAN implementation, while 35% noted the importance of flexible multicloud and hybrid IT architectures driven by shifting work realities.

These findings indicate a growing need for flexibility within organizations to better take advantage of the growth of cloud and edge-based IT. Optimizing these trends can increase efficiencies and innovations and offer a strategic approach for companies looking to leapfrog their competitors in meaningful ways.

Needed: Commitment to Robust Security

An entrenched commitment to cybersecurity is also paramount. Hybrid work and the growth of cloud computing can create scalability issues for traditional security stacks, and security policy enforcement can adversely affect the user experience. Enterprises need robust security solutions that provide critical protection while maintaining performance and controlling costs.

Network disruptions caused by cyberattacks continue to increase in terms of prevalence, sophistication and impact on commerce. For example, research from Corero this year shows a 39% year-over-year increase in multivector spread spectrum pulse attacks designed to circumvent legacy distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack detection and protection.

Making Your Customers’ Network Work

How can channel partners best position themselves to strengthen their customers’ networks?

One strategic approach is to ensure tools provide the centralization and automation that’s needed to allow customers’ small IT teams to adapt to their changing worlds. Network expansion can be most challenging for small teams. By providing a central point to monitor network activity quickly and simply, partners can ensure business continuity as well as providing peace of mind.

Security solutions can be delivered by channel partners as managed services, delivering world-class protection to small and midsized businesses that don’t have the in-house expertise to ensure the security of their data and apps. For example, services such as enhanced protection against DDoS attacks and managed detection and response (MDR) services to help detect breaches early and prevent or contain damage are available as fully managed offerings.

Service providers also can deliver valuable situational expertise to customers looking for a deeper understanding of best practices in their industry, as well as in other verticals facing similar disruption. Your value as a partner is to find the commonalities across industries. And many of the specific issues customers face may harken back to some universal challenges.

For instance, customers across verticals often face the challenge of limited IT staff and need an objective, experienced partner that can deliver robust strategies and identify specific areas where investment will drive value.

As the pace of disruption remains high, the need for flexibility and security is paramount. Effective investment in customers’ networks is a fundamental way to achieve this — and will be something partners are increasingly asked to consult on over the coming years.

Richard Vidil is VP of solutions architecture for the Americas at GTT. Prior to GTT he held senior technical leadership positions with CenturyLink, uReach Technologies, 3Com, Lucent Technologies and AT&T Bell Labs. He holds a BSEE from Penn State and an MSEE from Carnegie Mellon. You may follow him on LinkedIn or @GTTCOMM on Twitter.

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