Networking trends including SD-WAN, edge and 5G technology dominate the plans of IT executives and management as they look to develop efficient, bulletproof enterprise communications strategies for the future.
Those trends and others such as network security, server consolidation and WAN optimization were cited as primary IT drivers of future investment, according to Network World’s 2020 State of the Network report.
The survey tapped 268 IT executives and management personnel with primary networking responsibilities for their organization to find out what initiatives are motivating the move to a more digital business environment.
SD-WAN and WAN optimization
The survey found that 58% of respondents said SD-WAN can improve bandwidth efficiency, and 55% said it will expand connectivity options. 48% said it will encourage hybrid cloud and 41% said it would encourage multi-cloud adoption. The Network World survey found that the increased use of containers and cloud-based applications that need access from the edge is also driving the use of SD-WAN technologies.
There are a few differences by company size: 63% of enterprises say SD-WAN will improve the bandwidth efficiency for its cloud resources compared to 55% of SMBs. Close to half (46%) of enterprises expect SD-WAN to encourage multi-cloud, while only 26% of SMBs agree, perhaps because multicloud is less prevalent in smaller organizations, the survey stated.
The State of the Network survey found that 44% of organizations are currently piloting or using SD-WAN, and another 28% have it on their radar. Organizations expect SD-WAN to improve management and monitoring (52%), increase resiliency (51%), improve network security (50%) and prioritize business-critical traffic (46%), the survey stated.