By Oliver Reynolds, Service Provider Account Manager, Netutils.
Views expressed in this post are original thoughts posted by Oliver Reynolds, Service Provider Account Manager, Netutils. These views are his own and in no way do they represent the views of the company.
It may seem like a very strange question, but have you ever asked yourself if your business is really ready for the next big win? Now, this isn’t a question to ask in order to provoke a long winded response about the work you’ve done to understand your customer’s requirements, but simply: “do YOU believe your current infrastructure can handle the additional load that next customer your sales guys are so eagerly fighting for will bring?”
If your sales team bring in that big business win they’ve been shouting about and if your current infrastructure is ready then maybe the rest of this blog isn’t for you. On the other hand, the initial question may have made you think and maybe even highlighted some concerns about your ability to facilitate their requirements, either way, I challenge you to read on and question if you are truly ready.
With the industry ever-evolving , ISP’s are constantly under pressure to provide bandwidth against new services that, at point of conception, are not necessarily developed to be efficient in their bandwidth use, but to enable new value add services to increase revenue. Video and data are key examples. Both are services that have required specific compression codec development to decrease their bandwidth and improve quality of service.
So, has this started to make you think if you’re ready yet?
What if that new customer you bring on-board is the next Google or Facebook wannabe? Will they be looking to move forward with niche and unique services that haven’t had the efficiencies considered? Will your network be able to support the increased strain this new customer is going to bring? Again, your answer may well be yes as this was a consideration when purchasing your latest datacenter switches, routers etc. Brilliant! But what if it’s still not enough? How easy is it for you to increase that capacity and how much is it going to cost you? Will it still be stable running at 80% utilisation? Will that imply a reduction in the quality of service the rest of your customers have experienced for so long? You can answer these questions by engaging an experienced technology partner to review your existing infrastructure and provide competitive analysis on how you can move forward.
The question of whether you are ready for that next customer simply asks how much that customer is going to cost you at the point of overloading your network. Just considering that fact and reviewing the potential future risks to your network expansion with the right partner, will ensure that you align yourself to a solution that enables easy scaling when your business requires it, without pain to either your pocket or your customer’s quality of service.
I’m going to close with a statement by Colt’s Nicolas Fischbach, taken from a case study illustrating a deployment of Juniper MX Routers:
The future of networking is more simplification, more automation, and more elasticity,” says Fischbach.
We need architectures and technology components that enable us to achieve that. We can create a new virtual machine for a customer in minutes, so why should it take weeks to deliver a new service over an existing infrastructure? The network has to evolve to be very elastic, highly integrated, and fully automated to provide the flexible services that our customers demand today.
Juniper is one of our key partners enabling us to realize our vision,” says Fischbach.
The MX series router effectively supports our IP routing and switching requirements as well as future carrier Ethernet demands. Juniper collaborated closely with us to develop our Virtual CPE capabilities, which will take us to the next step of our high- performance, cost-effective, cloud-based vCPE solution.
Ensure you are planning not just for your business’ future, but also for that of your customers, both in resourcing and in the right technology partner. Otherwise that next deal may be the one to cause more pain than happiness!