Network as a Service For Businesses In South Florida
South Florida businesses and organizations are still in a state of transition, one that has been compounded significantly by the after-effects of COVID-19. The transition is defined by businesses and organizations embracing digital transformation. Trends driving digital transformation initiatives are diversified: the continued rise of systematically robust customer-driven organizations, the functional innovations that drive productivity, efficiency, and customer experiences, and IT infrastructure innovations.
There is a common thread that can enable these digital transformation initiatives: the network. Network connectivity is the base element that acts as the anchor for supporting an organization’s digital needs. However, many businesses and organizations still rely on legacy network systems and architectures that are not equipped to handle today’s digital, mobility-focused, and cloud-centric workforce.
Recently, a new model has surfaced to help businesses and organizations fill any holes in their networking strategy: Network as a Service (NaaS).
What Is Network as a Service (NaaS)?
NaaS can be defined as a fully managed network infrastructure that is provided 100% through the Managed Services Provider. This includes all parts of the Network Infrastructure core from firewalls, switches, and Wireless Access Points (WAP).
Network as a Service (NaaS) is an adaptable way to utilize an organization’s network infrastructure that enables it to keep pace with innovation, meet ever-changing business needs, optimize network performance, and optimize user experiences through a subscription model.
What Are the Benefits Offered by NaaS?
Traditionally, organizations have consumed network infrastructure via the expenditure of hardware, software, licenses, and services that may or may not come as a package deal. NaaS allows organizations to consume and potentially outsource the entire lifecycle of their network deployment, with hardware, software, licenses, and services that are offered under a subscription-based model, which in some cases can be considered as an operational expense.
NaaS allows organizations to outsource the planning, deployment, and operational management of their network. Through a NaaS model, organizations get the latest access to technology while alleviating the burden of their internal IT staff. NaaS is also fully managed and fully supported by the Managed Services Provider, and all warranty and support issues are completely covered by the MSP.
NaaS enables organizations to leverage the expertise of Managed Service Providers to not only optimize day-to-day network performance but provide the best user experience through:
- Continuous performance and security monitoring, which can ultimately ease the management burden for organizations that lack the necessary resources
- Proactive management with continuous access to networking experts and specialists
- Network designs and configurations that have been developed with the varying needs of organizations in mind
Network as a Service allows companies to outsource WAN and Cloud connectivity without having to invest in costly hardware. Amongst the primary benefits are rapid implementation and low cost of entry. With that flexibility, one loses some control, which is an obvious drawback for some.
What Are the Drawbacks of NaaS?
If Network-as-a-Service (Naas) is the right approach for an organization, what should it look like? There’s an increasing amount of variability in the approaches businesses and organizations are taking, and each approach has its own benefits and drawbacks. One of the drawbacks of NaaS is the large initial investment by the MSP and the requirement to keep extra stock on hand. Another drawback of NaaS is support. The customization of services can create a greater burden on traditional network operations practices.
Other drawbacks of NaaS include:
- Public cloud usage carries some vulnerability risks, and organizations should always keep this in mind when selecting a provider.
- As with any managed network solution, downtime will always be a potential drawback.
- Dependency, also known as vendor-lock-in. It will be difficult to migrate from one provider to another because of the huge data migration.
What’s the Best Way to Get Started with NaaS?
Some of the main reasons businesses and organizations are showing interest in NaaS models are:
- The need to expand network capacity
- The need to implement new technology
- The need to scale network resources when necessary
- The need for a more simplified network management process
So, for organizations that are showing interest in NaaS models, what is the best way to get started? One of the best ways to get started with NaaS is to undergo a NaaS readiness assessment conducted by a trusted IT partner. After the readiness assessment, your IT partner can provide you with a deployment roadmap that can help facilitate your success. There are various types of criteria for selecting the best vendor and the right vendor for your organization will depend heavily on your
As businesses and organizations across South Florida look to embrace digital transformation initiatives, they are beginning to realize the importance of their network as a critical component of their initiatives. Relying on legacy network equipment and architectures does not scale in today’s digital work environment. NaaS provides businesses and organizations with the ability to access new networking technology, produce a better response to today’s work environment, and be more agile.
For providers and vendors that want to get started with NaaS, start with smaller clients that you can build your NaaS portfolio out of and standardize on highly supported product lines and vendors you already work well together with. If a firewall manufacturer sells many models of all different sizes, work to narrow the line down to only a few “standardized” models that will be a good fit for the bulk of your clients, so overall support and faster replacement turnaround is to be expected.
Palidrome’s Network As A Service Solutions
Data is the driving force of an organization. Organizations are no longer operating in the days when data resides securely behind a data center’s firewall. Data is now making its way across the internet, being generated in various applications and stored in multiple cloud environments. With data governance and privacy regulations on the rise, organizations must be sure their NaaS provider has the capabilities to ensure data security and compliance at all times.
For businesses and organizations, you should choose a vendor that provides robust security to meet regulatory and compliance requirements. For vendors, it is important to ensure your legal paperwork is up to date, as if you lose a client, you may not be able to cleanly dissect their network and leave them with nothing, and they may not continue to pay you for the equipment you have invested in their facility.
Are you considering NaaS for your next network infrastructure procurement process? Contact Palindrome Consulting today.