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IWAN Wed: Say “Yes” and “Now” with Akamai Connect

Cisco and Akamai ConnectHas this happened to you? The line of business comes to you one day and says they have this great new idea to train the sales teams.  “Let’s use YouTube videos”, they say.  Or the CMO comes to you and says, “digital signage will increase our revenue if we can promote this next new line of products that is about to launch”.  Or “This new cloud application looks great and it will increase employee productivity!”

But all you could say was ‘no, that’s not possible’.  Not because you didn’t want to enable each of these groups but because 1) you are short of resources or 2) budget is tight or 3) the infrastructure just isn’t ready yet.  Any or all of the above?

With 80% of the workforce in a non-HQ location, enabling these digital services is daunting to IT.  What happens to other business critical applications if the WAN is flooded with YouTube videos?  Digital Signage is a great idea, sure, but how do I distribute those HD videos or images to the stores?  Cloud applications may seem like not much as a user but what happens if all my users are accessing the cloud at the same time? Read More »

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IWAN Wed: What’s more important? Uptime or Cost?

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 5.25.06 PM“Location, Location, Location” is what you need to keep in mind for real estate in the physical world.  But in today’s
enterprise environment where everything is virtual and many critical apps are in  the data center or cloud, the most important thing is connectivity.

So welcome to the era of connectivity, connectivity, connectivity!

As connectivity is so important, what can we do to ensure the uptime of the branch WAN connectivity without increasing costs?

Read More »

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Bandwidth Alone Will Not Solve Branch Application Performance

Mark Lohmeyer CLUS 2014For years, many IT organizations have been addressing slow application performance by adding more bandwidth. With broadband speeds available at over 100 Mbps, and the future of Fiber-optic at 1 Gbps, you would think bandwidth would solve all our application problems. However, many organizations are quickly learning that bandwidth on its own is not the answer, especially when it comes to the branch office.

So what is the problem? While connections are getting faster, branch offices still need high reliability. We all know downtime can be very costly. The Aberdeen group estimates that downtime can cost a company, on average, over $160,000 per hour.  And, some hours are more costly than others. For example, if your CEO is talking to shareholders during an earnings call and the network goes out – I would imagine that would cost someone their job.

There are several factors to consider on why “throwing bandwidth at the problem” is not enough. First, let’s consider the impact of data center virtualization. Over the past decade, organizations have been consolidating applications to their data centers. While IT has benefitted from cost savings, applications have moved further away from users. This has resulted in a delay in application response times, which is felt strongest by branch users. Read More »

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IWAN Wed: Intelligent WAN @ Cisco Live!

The long awaited Cisco Live in San Francisco is only four days away.  There is a lot in store for our customers including hundreds of technical sessions, keynotes from executives and industry guests, product and solutions demos at World of Solutions and more.

One of the most important topics, in my opinion, that I believe you should tune into is on Intelligent WAN.  As you come to Cisco Live and are exploring Cisco Intelligent WANvarious technologies that will help your organization scale and grow for the next 3-5 years, what element is most crucial?  How about the branches and stores throughout the city, country or world that is growing rapidly, not just in terms of sheer count but also by size?  The number of employees working there is growing; the number of customer engagements is increasing; and the number and type of users are exploding.  You need an intelligent WAN that can adjust to the demand, meet the high user expectations and be the foundation of innovation needed at the branch.

To learn more about Cisco Intelligent WAN, please join us for the following activities.  We would love to hear your feedback on how Intelligent WAN can help your business and IT organization. Read More »

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Shining a New Light on Shadow IT

More people than ever are talking about “shadow IT” nowadays.  As the name implies, it’s mysterious, perhaps even malevolent by some people’s standards.  From a traditional IT vantage point, this negative view may be somewhat justified given the risks it creates around security, compliance, productivity, and technology investment.

But let’s look at it from another perspective. Shadow IT is on the rise because more people outside of IT are gaining awareness and access to technology, and harnessing it as a business differentiator. More importantly, many of these people are business leaders with growing budgets that align to their priorities. Here’s how much technology budget growth business leaders expect in the next year:

(read more)

Over the next year how will your group’s technology budget change 

Source: Cisco Business and IT Priority Survey results Read More »

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