December 16, 2021
SD-WAN for VoIP and business communications
Video conferencing and voice over internet protocol (VoIP) communications have replaced traditional meetings for businesses all around the world. The need to meet face-to-face has somewhat lost its importance, especially since Covid-related restrictions have normalised remote working.
Effective business communications is important not only for internal decision-making and strategic planning, but also in maintaining and developing relationships with clients. With so much emphasis on having high-quality video-conferencing capabilities, large organisations are looking for the best possible internet connection that can support online collaboration, cloud computing and VoIP.
SEACOM is a leading supplier of fibre services and information and communications technology (ICT) solutions. Businesses need to consider a software-defined wide area network (SD-WAN) as an excellent solution for VoIP and digital communication. SD-WAN is a type of network that is virtually managed and offers the most dynamic and effective way to prioritise online collaboration.
Let’s unpack SD-WAN a bit more and look at how large organisations with multiple branches or remote employees can stand to benefit from this type of networking.
What is SD-WAN?
To understand SD-WAN, consider this example. Imagine a large university that has campuses in various locations across a city. It’s necessary for different departments to send large files, share information about students and study programs, as well as have regular video conferencing calls.
The IT team needs to set up a wide area network (WAN) that connects these different locations. This allows data to be quickly transferred from one department to the next. If the IT team uses SD-WAN, this means that software is used to manage this network and automatically control the flow of traffic across the connections.
SD-WAN uses virtual architecture to connect different locations. Large institutions, including banking, healthcare, education, retail and manufacturing, are a few examples of the type of enterprises that stand to benefit the most from this type of networking solution.
Why is SD-WAN good for VoIP?
VoIP is much cheaper than traditional phone systems, but it has unfortunately got a reputation of being unreliable. Voice is very sensitive to internet connection issues. Jitter, latency and an unstable connection will result in poor quality sound. Businesses that rely on phone calls for daily operations and customer services have become wary of VoIP because of these challenges.
SD-WAN offers a cost-effective and high-quality solution to these issues. With SD-WAN, certain types of data can be prioritised. Because bandwidth allocation can be predetermined, VoIP call quality can be given the highest priority, ensuring that call quality is consistent. Coupled with a reliable fibre optic internet connection, VoIP is remarkably better than traditional cable telecommunications.
How can businesses benefit from SD-WAN?
SD-WAN ensures that high-priority data transfers take place by automatically routing traffic over the best available connection. If there is an issue with a particular link, the software switches traffic over to another route. This type of networking agility is a feature of SD-WAN that allows traffic to be quickly rerouted if a link fails or becomes congested.
Networking engineers can quickly respond to changing needs, changing data priorities, scaling up bandwidth and easily detecting potential issues. The IT team has full visibility of what is happening on the network, and using a software as a service (SaaS) application, they can ensure excellent performance at all times. This reduces the need for on-site IT technicians because the network is managed remotely.
SD-WAN also enables companies to separate network traffic into different channels according to priority. This means that critical traffic is separated from non-critical traffic, which improves the efficiency of a business and ensures that time-sensitive data is given priority. These traffic classifications are handled autonomously by the software.
How do business communications improve with SD-WAN?
Older networking technologies required networks to be built on private links. These technologies were not designed to handle the demands of online collaboration and cloud computing. Data backups, teleconferencing and the use of Office 365, all require a stable high-speed connection.
SD-WAN allows IT engineers to build private networks, including firewalls and encryptions. Data can be securely shared from one point to another and end-to-end encryption helps organisations defend themselves against cyberattacks and data breaches. Sensitive information, including personal data, financial records and confidential communication can be kept safe.
SD-WAN offers new possibilities for VoIP
This cloud-based software simplifies the setup, management and maintenance of large-scale organisational networks. There is no need for specialised equipment, which means fewer vendor lock-ins and reduced cost. Better network visibility and elastic traffic management allow IT teams to prioritise modern applications such as VoIP calling, video conferencing and cloud computing.
Software is used to automate the flow of voice traffic, ensuring optimal speeds for certain applications at all times. Better performance, flexibility and low latency are essential for the smooth running of business communications.
SEACOM offers both break-fix and managed services, meaning that organisations can choose to maintain full control of their network, or out-source the network design, management and maintenance. SEACOM recommends SD-WAN for large enterprises that require a flexible, scalable, secure VoIP network. For more information or to get a quote for our SD-WAN solutions, email us at email@example.com or leave us a message.
SEACOM owns Africa’s most extensive network of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure, including subsea cables and secure internet connections. We offer a diverse range of flexible, scalable and high-quality solutions for businesses that meet world-class standards for connectivity.
SEACOM is privately owned and operated, making it agile and adaptable to the needs of the customer. This makes us the preferred ICT and internet connectivity partner for African businesses and peripheral service providers. We can guarantee high-speed, low-latency and secure internet connections to corporates and small enterprises.
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