Service Providers Prioritize Performance Management for SD-WAN
June 02, 2021

Sergio Bea
Accedian

Share this

As the global telecommunications industry embraces SD-WAN, service providers are finding that corporate customers are increasingly favoring the technology as a managed service for specific applications at smaller sites.


A recent study from Accedian, Amdocs, and VMware, working with Heavy Reading analysts, surveyed 103 global telecom service providers on issues related to SD-WAN managed services implementation, including where they see growth and what the industry considered its biggest challenges in the implementation of SD-WAN.

Promising Opportunities in Certain Verticals

Unsurprisingly, the verticals that have the clearest use cases are seen as the highest priority targets for service providers to build out their offerings. Leading the pack is the retail industry, considered a priority by 45% of respondents. The ability to connect multiple storefronts, warehouses, and delivery hubs, and provide customers with a multichannel experience were seen as shining examples of SD-WAN in action.

Manufacturing came in second, with 38% of respondents saying it was a priority. Manufacturing at a global scale can involve operations from a variety of sites, including production facilities, factory floors, warehouses, and throughout the supply chain in general, making it an appealing target for SD-WAN services.

In third place was the healthcare industry, with 32% of respondents calling it a priority. This finding is no doubt because of the pandemic fueling demand for cloud applications like remote healthcare, which operates from disparate locations like the doctor's office, hospital, and pharmacy.

Navigating Challenges

The survey also asked service providers about the challenges they faced when building out SD-WAN offerings.

The biggest challenge, faced by 66% of the survey's respondents, was monitoring network performance. This seems to be even more daunting at scale, with 71% of service providers whose annual revenue exceeds $5B acknowledging the struggle.

Also top of mind for service providers was the ability to correlate events across physical underlay and overlay, with 61% of those larger service providers reporting an issue.

When it comes to managing network performance, more than 60% of respondents reported using three or more different management tools for SD-WAN service. A smaller, but still significant 16% of respondents reported using five or more tools.

Looking Ahead

As service providers continue to build out SD-WAN, it is likely that many will embrace automation to aid in the management of network performance. When it came specifically to managing performance of the underlying network, 37% of respondents indicated that automation was critical, making it the number one priority.

It is also worth noting that, although automation for provisioning, verification, and activation have become relatively common practice in the last few years, automating those three capabilities is a top priority for companies who have not already done so.

The report finds that many service providers are achieving their SD-WAN performance goals by outsourcing active performance monitoring to third party providers.

The report also suggests that service providers may find they are unable to streamline their SD-WAN services by reducing the number of products they offer, but that they may be able to enlist the help of open standard third party providers to simplify their offerings.

There's an obvious opportunity with SD-WAN. Service providers have been hard at work setting expectations with their customers, promising improved performance, faster deployments, and overall better end user experiences on their networks.

In order to deliver on those promises, there will be no room for service providers to neglect performance monitoring. Customers will hold service providers to the KPIs they deliver. If a provider's performance, relationships, and reputation are on the line, following through on critical priorities like performance management and automation should be the number one priority.

Sergio Bea is VP Global Enterprise and Channels at Accedian
Share this

The Latest

November 28, 2022

Many have assumed that the mainframe is a dying entity, but instead, a mainframe renaissance is underway. Despite this notion, we are ushering in a future of more strategic investments, increased capacity, and leading innovations ...

November 22, 2022

Most (85%) consumers shop online or via a mobile app, with 59% using these digital channels as their primary holiday shopping channel, according to the Black Friday Consumer Report from Perforce Software. As brands head into a highly profitable time of year, starting with Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it's imperative development teams prepare for peak traffic, optimal channel performance, and seamless user experiences to retain and attract shoppers ...

November 21, 2022

From staffing issues to ineffective cloud strategies, NetOps teams are looking at how to streamline processes, consolidate tools, and improve network monitoring. What are some best practices that can help achieve this? Let's dive into five ...

November 18, 2022

On November 1, Taylor Swift announced the Eras Tour ... the whole world is now standing in the same virtual queue, and even the most durable cloud architecture can't handle this level of deluge ...

November 17, 2022

OpenTelemetry, a collaborative open source observability project, has introduced a new network protocol that addresses the infrastructure management headache, coupled with collector configuration options to filter and reduce data volume ...

November 16, 2022

A unified view of digital infrastructure is essential for IT teams that must improve the digital user experience while boosting overall organizational productivity, according to a survey of IT managers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), from Riverbed and market research firm IDC ...

November 15, 2022

Building the visibility infrastructure to make cloud networks observable is a complex technical challenge. But with careful planning and a few strategic decisions, it's possible to appropriately design, set up and manage visibility solutions for the cloud ...

November 14, 2022

According to a recent IT at Work: 2022 and Beyond study, there have been a few silver linings to the pandemic ... The study revealed some intriguing trends, which will be discussed in turn ...

November 09, 2022

The absence of topology can be a key inhibitor for AIOps tools, creating blind spots for AIOps as they only have access to event data. A topology, an IT service model, or a dependency map is a real-time picture of tools and services that are connected and dependent on each other to deliver an IT service ...

November 08, 2022

A modern data stack is a suite of technologies and apps built specifically to funnel data into an organization, transform it into actionable data, build a plan for acting on that data, and then implement that plan. The majority of modern data stacks are built on cloud-based services, composed of low- and no-code tools that enable a variety of groups within an organization to explore and use their data. Read on to learn how to optimize your data stack ...