Steve Brar
Steve Brar is the Director of Solutions Marketing for Riverbed. In this role, he leads the marketing strategy for Riverbed's...
Read Full Bio >>

Steve Brar | December 01, 2017 |


How SD-WAN Benefits Unified Communications

How SD-WAN Benefits Unified Communications With this technology comes the potential for costs-savings, efficiencies, and improved user experiences.

With this technology comes the potential for costs-savings, efficiencies, and improved user experiences.

Unified communications (UC) enables your company to connect its distributed workforces as if they were meeting face to face without incurring the expense of business travel. Collaboration using high-definition (HD) video and voice, instant messaging, presence, and desktop sharing increases employee productivity, but it also comes with higher bandwidth requirements.

When using UC applications, your employees expect a positive experience across multiple devices regardless of their locations. But, your network can be challenged to provide sufficient bandwidth to support video conferencing and other UC applications, especially at the branch. Routing real-time communications traffic over MPLS is expensive, making it especially cost prohibitive for smaller companies to adopt UC.

How SD-WAN Benefits UC Applications
Software-defined WAN (SD-WAN) technology provides a powerful yet simple solution for designing, deploying, and managing distributed networks for today's cloud-connected enterprises. SD-WAN benefits your enterprise by offering the flexibility to connect any mix of MPLS, Internet VPN, and public Internet and provides the reliability, cost-effectiveness, and security required to support your UC needs.

SD-WAN decouples the network and the control plane, which allows for central control of network-wide policy and security. A software-defined approach makes it easier to adapt to the changing demands of application delivery and user productivity and helps maximize the use of UC.

Enhance UC with Business Policies and QoS
Whether you're using on-premises or cloud-based UC, reliable connectivity is critical. With SD-WAN you can establish global business-aligned policies that automate enforcement of performance objectives and access privileges for UC users, wherever they may be.

SD-WAN can automate QoS to prioritize UC apps based on need or priority and the WAN path quality (latency, jitter, packet loss), and transport those apps over any network, including public networks, leveraging built-in security capabilities. For example, business-critical video and applications can be prioritized over recreational video and sent over less costly or less congested networks.

QoS prioritizes apps, users, and data flows to guarantee performance and meet SLAs. Network QoS automatically ensures fair or better network access and bandwidth for critical apps during periods of network congestion. In addition, it ensures sufficient bandwidth for key applications, including VoIP, live video, and thin clients -- without you having to reserve or buy more bandwidth.

IT also can utilize easy-to-manage, business-intent policies to automatically select a path, like the public Internet, for a specific app (like a live event) or group of apps (such as training videos). Thus, IT can cost-effectively offload bandwidth-consuming apps to the less costly Internet.

Support UC at the Branch
Your organization's branch offices are critical to your business and collaboration using UC tools is vital. But branch bandwidth can be insufficient, especially for video requirements. Until now, enterprises have had to move to broadband at the branch offices to ensure sufficient bandwidth to support UC applications such as video.

SD-WAN provides a simple, cost-effective solution to enable the rapid deployment of network connectivity to your branch offices and provides centralized control that helps ease the management burden.

SD-WAN can benefit your enterprise with automated zero-touch deployment and provisioning in seconds at the branch office. Holistic change management across branch locations with a simple change to the single traffic, security, or port policy means no downtime at the branch.

Make Your UC Performance More Visible
The best SD-WAN solutions provide a single unified view from a cloud console and integrated management of hybrid WANs, cloud networks, and branch wireless and wired LANs under a single policy framework. Centralized management with easy-to-use, menu-driven workflows can eliminate tedious, error-prone CLI configuration. Intuitive, cloud-centric SD-WAN workflows enable instant network expansion through zero-touch provisioning at remote locations and automated single-click connectivity and orchestration into cloud environments.

You can detect every application on your network and optimize bandwidth with application-aware policies. SD-WAN monitors application performance and troubleshoots issues that arise. And it delivers applications based on business-intent policies that make your life easier -- without adding any new capabilities or solutions. Deep packet inspection precisely identifies application flows and classifies more than 1,300 applications -- on-premises or in the cloud.

SD-WAN Enhancing UC
SD-WAN's ability to offload large amounts of video, VoIP, and other recreational traffic from the MPLS to the more cost-effective Internet at the edge and go direct to the cloud can mean costs-savings, efficiency, and a better UC experience for users. It can save bandwidth for critical apps, reduce unnecessary bandwidth usage, and ensure faster access to apps for improved user productivity. SD-WAN allows you to realize the full potential of UC.


October 24, 2018

With disparate workplaces and ever-expanding volumes of information to manage, the challenges for collaborating effectively are only intensifying. Many critical applications are not integrated, and

October 10, 2018

Businesses are growing across international borders quicker than ever, but scaling operations to follow suit can be a harder, longer process.

This webinar focuses on scaling your next-generat

September 26, 2018

Join Kevin Kieller, Microsoft UC&C expert, along with Ribbon Communications and Polycom, for an update on Microsoft Ignite, and a focus on critical things you need to know about your voice deployme

March 12, 2018
An effective E-911 implementation doesn't just happen; it takes a solid strategy. Tune in for tips from IT expert Irwin Lazar, of Nemertes Research.
March 9, 2018
IT consultant Steve Leaden lays out the whys and how-tos of getting the green light for your convergence strategy.
March 7, 2018
In advance of his speech tech tutorial at EC18, communications analyst Jon Arnold explores what voice means in a post-PBX world.
February 28, 2018
Voice engagement isn't about a simple phone call any longer, but rather a conversational experience that crosses from one channel to the next, as Daniel Hong, a VP and research director with Forrester....
February 16, 2018
What trends and technologies should you be up on for your contact center? Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center & Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2018, gives us the lowdown.
February 9, 2018
Melanie Turek, VP of connected work research at Frost & Sullivan, walks us through key components -- and sticking points -- of customer-oriented digital transformation projects.
February 2, 2018
UC consultant Marty Parker has crunched lots of numbers evaluating UC options; tune in for what he's learned and tips for your own analysis.
January 26, 2018
Don't miss out on the fun! Organizer Alan Quayle shares details of his pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon, TADHack-mini '18, showcasing programmable communications.
December 20, 2017
Kevin Kieller, partner with enableUC, provides advice on how to move forward with your Skype for Business and Teams deployments.
December 20, 2017
Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst with ZK Research, shares his perspective on artificial intelligence and the future of team collaboration.
December 20, 2017
Delanda Coleman, Microsoft senior marketing manager, explains the Teams vision and shares use case examples.
November 30, 2017
With a ruling on the FCC's proposed order to dismantle the Open Internet Order expected this month, communications technology attorney Martha Buyer walks us through what's at stake.
October 23, 2017
Wondering which Office 365 collaboration tool to use when? Get quick pointers from CBT Nuggets instructor Simona Millham.
September 22, 2017
In this podcast, we explore the future of work with Robert Brown, AVP of the Cognizant Center for the Future of Work, who helps us answer the question, "What do we do when machines do everything?"
September 8, 2017
Greg Collins, a technology analyst and strategist with Exact Ventures, delivers a status report on 5G implementation plans and tells enterprises why they shouldn't wait to move ahead on potential use ....
August 25, 2017
Find out what business considerations are driving the SIP trunking market today, and learn a bit about how satisfied enterprises are with their providers. We talk with John Malone, president of The Ea....
August 16, 2017
World Vision U.S. is finding lots of goodness in RingCentral's cloud communications service, but as Randy Boyd, infrastructure architect at the global humanitarian nonprofit, tells us, he and his team....
August 11, 2017
Alicia Gee, director of unified communications at Sutter Physician Services, oversees the technical team supporting a 1,000-agent contact center running on Genesys PureConnect. She catches us up on th....
August 4, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, has lately been working on integrating enterprise communications into Internet of Things ecosystems. He shares examples and off....
July 27, 2017
Industry watcher Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares her perspective on this acquisition, discussing Mitel's market positioning, why the move makes sense, and more.
July 14, 2017
Lantre Barr, founder and CEO of Blacc Spot Media, urges any enterprise that's been on the fence about integrating real-time communications into business workflows to jump off and get started. Tune and....
June 28, 2017
Communications expert Tsahi Levent-Levi, author of the popular blog, keeps a running tally and comprehensive overview of communications platform-as-a-service offerings in his "Choosing a W....
June 9, 2017
If you think telecom expense management applies to nothing more than business phone lines, think again. Hyoun Park, founder and principal investigator with technology advisory Amalgam Insights, tells ....
June 2, 2017
Enterprises strategizing on mobility today, including for internal collaboration, don't have the luxury of learning as they go. Tony Rizzo, enterprise mobility specialist with Blue Hill Research, expl....
May 24, 2017
Mark Winther, head of IDC's global telecom consulting practice, gives us his take on how CPaaS providers evolve beyond the basic building blocks and address maturing enterprise needs.
May 18, 2017
Diane Myers, senior research director at IHS Markit, walks us through her 2017 UC-as-a-service report... and shares what might be to come in 2018.
April 28, 2017
Change isn't easy, but it is necessary. Tune in for advice and perspective from Zeus Kerravala, co-author of a "Digital Transformation for Dummies" special edition.
April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.