SD-WAN caddies: What most companies do to guide digital transformation

Video series: How SD-WAN is like golf

Posted on January 9, 2020

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A lot of people think of a caddie as the guy who carries the bag. Actually a caddie is the trusted advisor that even pro golfers rely on to choose the right club or play the break on a putting green. When it comes to SD-WAN, many companies have tried a DIY (Do it Yourself) approach, only to realize that they need a caddie–a managed SD-WAN service. Here are SD-WAN experts and avid golfers, analyst Zeus Kerravala and Masergy’s Chris Werpy to tell you why, in another installment of “How SD-WAN is Like Golf.”

You and I play different courses. With some courses we have a card, with others we have the technology and the range finder, and with some we actually have caddies. Sometimes we actually have the old traditional model–and we have to carry the bag ourselves! This concept of old versus new translates into the SD-WAN world. We saw this in the early days. We had the “do it yourselfers” versus the managed services delivery models. So, Zeus walk me through your perspective on this part of the industry and what you see going on right now.

When I was a network engineer, I was a hard core do-it-yourself person. I thought I could do everything myself. And that was ok back in the old MPLS frame relay days, where there was one way to design a network. Because, indeed, there was only one way to design a network! 

Today, when you move to SD-WAN, there’s a lot of things to consider: 

Historically, the value of a managed service was about 1/3, meaning you did 2/3rds of the work yourself. You see that completely reversed in today’s SD-WAN world. The majority of companies will use a managed service–either fully or at least partially–to help them get past those big roadblocks and get deployments done. 

Are you looking for a trusted advisor to show you how to play-to-win with SD-WAN? Check out Zeus Kerravala’s SD-WAN buyer’s guide

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Chris Werpy

Chris Werpy is senior vice president of solutions and services and has been with Masergy since 2007. He leads multiple teams and is responsible for the Solutions Engineering, Client Services and Emerging Markets organizations. He brings more than 15 years of networking and communications experience with a proven track record in technical and strategic roles in operations, sales and business development. Prior to joining Masergy, Chris held various leadership positions at ICG Communications, LineSider Technologies and Pac-West Telecom. He has published numerous industry articles, spoken on various panels and is a recognized thought leader in the communications and security industries.

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