Digital technologies have forever altered the services that customers demand and the ways in which organizations operate. Customers are clamoring for more personalized, on-demand experiences, and organizations must adapt or risk disruption to their core business models.
The branch is the epicenter of digital change
Companies benefit the most when they implement digital strategies at branch locations. At these sites, employees tend to need access to high-bandwidth cloud services (like video conferencing and cloud productivity apps) that were seldom used a decade ago. The branch is also where customer engagement is highest — whether customers are buying used goods or new cars — and where there’s the greatest opportunity to build digitally transformative customer experiences.
Building a foundation for digital transformation
Supporting these digital initiatives means that IT teams need to implement a solid technical stack. In particular, a robust network infrastructure is crucial to ensuring that remote branches enjoy speedy and secure connectivity. As high-bandwidth workloads and apps shift to the cloud, getting new sites up to speed quickly is of vital importance.
But this task is easier said than done for many IT teams, especially small teams in charge of managing networks spread across many different sites. IT admins have more connectivity options than ever, from broadband to MPLS to LTE, increasing the pressure they’re under to optimize for time, cost, and opportunity. For example, adding an LTE uplink might cost an organization more money upfront, but doing so could also increase profits by dramatically increasing deployment speed and providing a reliable fail-over option.
The possibilities are endless
Meraki has always focused on simplifying technology so that IT teams can easily and quickly deploy networks that enable new business opportunities. Today, organizations are able to deploy entire networks at never-before-seen speeds, and unique applications are appearing due to newly available connectivity options. Imagine a vending machine that can connect to an external server over LTE, helping the machine’s owner to check stock levels and dynamically adjust pricing on the fly based on supply and demand. Or an organization that can spin up new sites in a matter of hours, rather than weeks, by eliminating the need for slow MPLS installations. In fact, one of Meraki’s customers, Individual Restaurant Company, can deploy access points, endpoint management, and SD-WAN to 5-6 locations in a single day to support point-of-sale devices and a loyalty-driving guest Wi-Fi network.
To help IT teams — and the businesses they serve — build an effective digital transformation foundation, we’ve recently introduced new products that help IT admins take advantage of new uplink options and optimize the network experience for high-bandwidth use cases. Meraki MX security and SD-WAN appliances can help IT admins modernize branch locations and set them up for success. To learn more about how MX can unlock new possibilities for your organization, visit the Meraki blog.