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TMCNet:  Enterprises Turn to SDN to Reduce Costs, Better Serve Customers

[September 18, 2020]

Enterprises Turn to SDN to Reduce Costs, Better Serve Customers

STAMFORD, Conn., Sept. 18, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Enterprises across the globe are looking to transition from traditional networking technologies to software-defined network services to reduce costs, migrate operations to the cloud and improve response time and overall customer experience, according to a new report published today by Information Services Group (ISG) (Nasdaq: III), a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

The ISG Provider LensNetworks – Software Defined Solutions and Service Partners Archetype Report finds the adoption of SDN and related technologies high on corporate agendas. In many cases, enterprises are moving from pilot tests of SDN solutions to commercial-scale deliveries. Along with cloud adoption, the transition to SDN is driving massive and rapid change throughout the enterprise and technology and service provider communities.

“SDN technologies allow the delivery of agile, flexible and cost-effective connectivity to support the digital roadmaps of corporate business transformation,” said Jan Erik Aase, director and global leader, ISG Provider Lens Research. “Enterprises are looking to adopt SDN technologies as a way to future-proof their business models and reduce risk.”

Several factors are driving the transition to SDN technologies, the report says. Enterprises are increasingly focused on migrating their IT and network operations to the cloud, and SDN reduces complexity and enables a low-risk migration to cloud environments.

In addition, enterprises have become increasingly focused on improving the integration, automation, orchestration and management of network resources and processes, often as part of their overall digital transformation strategy. This has evolved to encompass network function virtualization (NFV) and has led to software-defined networking in a wider sense.

Enterprises are also looking for ways to improve network efficiency while reducing usage costs even beyond the savings achieved by adopting an NFV strategy, the report says. This is particularly relevant with the explosion of data usage in mobile devices, often in areas that are not business-critical, such as social media applications or related services. Traffic can be routed over lower-cost connections automatically through software-defined pathways with little human intervention.

Enterprises also see SDN-related technologies as giving them the ability to improve customer experience, rapidly provide new services, boost sales and add new customers.

The ISG Provider LensNetworks – Software Defined Solutions and Service Partners Archetype Report examines four different types of customers, or archetypes, that are looking for SDN-related technologies. The report evaluates the capabilities of 70 SDN providers to deliver services to the four archetypes:

Conservative: These customers may be mid-sized to large enterprises, often with their own data centers and some, but not necessarily deep, experience in sourcing or hosting their srvices. They still may be on the journey from legacy siloed solutions to business-focused, integrated solutions, with a clear aspiration and plan to have networks as a function. These enterprises will usually be on the journey to becoming, or will already be, partially cloud-based. Cost and cost reduction, together with maintaining or improving quality and capability, will be the big drivers for them.




Moderate: These customers may be mid-sized to large enterprises, many also operating their own data centers. They will have a strategy roadmap for network transformation, approaching it in bite-sized phases, but may now be under pressure to accelerate the plan. Legacy infrastructure, budgetary constraints and the need for a business case for any pilot or implementation project must be addressed by a provider. These customers are likely to be planning to conduct, or may already be conducting, proof-of-concept or pilot projects to justify the cost and performance for deployment.

Aggressive Adopter: These customers may be mid-sized to large enterprises and have deep experience in outsourcing their services. They have evolved from legacy siloed solutions and do not have networks as a disjointed function, but rather a unified function that, together with the rest of IT, enables business differentiation. They often are already on the way to becoming cloud-based. Such enterprises will have data networks, and possibly voice networks, already dispersed. They may have their own small data centers or already host their services on a managed service basis.

Bleeding Edge: These types of enterprises are small to mid-sized with fewer internal resources, typically digital natives without significant legacy infrastructure to transform. They are likely past proof-of-concept trials and are actively seeking SD-WAN deployment to support newer, flexible networks, with ready-to-deploy or already cloud-based, disruptive applications. They typically are not looking for major support from their providers, but are looking for good price points for the purchase of equipment because their IT budgets directly impact the company bottom line in a major way. A focus on increasing revenue is the driver behind their strategy.

Among the providers ISG evaluated, AT&T, IBM, Tech Mahindra and Wipro were named leaders across all four archetypes and TCS and Verizon as leaders in three archetypes. The report names CenturyLink, NTT and Orange Business Services leaders across two archetypes and Apcela, Extreme Networks, HCL and Vodafone leaders in one archetype.

A customized version of the report is available from Orange Business Services.

The 2020 ISG Provider LensNetworks – Software Defined Solutions and Service Partners Archetype Report is available to subscribers or for immediate, one-time purchase on this webpage.

About ISG Provider Lens™ Research

The ISG Provider Lens™ Quadrant research series is the only service provider evaluation of its kind to combine empirical, data-driven research and market analysis with the real-world experience and observations of ISG's global advisory team. Enterprises will find a wealth of detailed data and market analysis to help guide their selection of appropriate sourcing partners, while ISG advisors use the reports to validate their own market knowledge and make recommendations to ISG's enterprise clients. The research currently covers providers offering their services globally, across Europe and Latin America, as well as in the U.S., Germany, Switzerland, the U.K., France, the Nordics, Brazil and Australia/New Zealand, with additional markets to be added in the future. For more information about ISG Provider Lens research, please visit this webpage.

The series is a complement to the ISG Provider Lens Archetype reports, which offer a first-of-its-kind evaluation of providers from the perspective of specific buyer types.

Starting this year, each ISG Provider Lens™ study will include a Global Summary to help enterprise subscribers better understand provider capabilities across all geographic markets covered by that study. All ISG Provider Lens™ reports also will now include an Enterprise Context feature to help executives quickly identify key insights related to their roles and responsibilities.

About ISG 

ISG (Information Services Group) (Nasdaq: III) is a leading global technology research and advisory firm. A trusted business partner to more than 700 clients, including more than 75 of the world's top 100 enterprises, ISG is committed to helping corporations, public sector organizations, and service and technology providers achieve operational excellence and faster growth. The firm specializes in digital transformation services, including automation, cloud and data analytics; sourcing advisory; managed governance and risk services; network carrier services; strategy and operations design; change management; market intelligence and technology research and analysis. Founded in 2006, and based in Stamford, Conn., ISG employs more than 1,300 digital-ready professionals operating in more than 20 countries—a global team known for its innovative thinking, market influence, deep industry and technology expertise, and world-class research and analytical capabilities based on the industry’s most comprehensive marketplace data. For more information, visit www.isg-one.com.

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Will Thoretz
Information Services Group, Inc. 
+1 203 517 3119
Will.Thoretz@isg-one.com

Jim Baptiste
Matter Communications for ISG
+1 978 518 4527
jbaptiste@matternow.com

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