The state of the WAN: Chad Milam

With the WAN world facing unprecedented challenges, how will buyers and sellers respond? We spoke to 16 people across the spectrum to discover where they think the important areas will be over the next few years.

“Services that expose personal data, or otherwise put the business in jeopardy, simply won’t be an option.”

Chad Milam, President and CEO, PacketFabric

There’s been a lot of talk over the past few years about “digital transformation” in the enterprise space. The COVID-19 pandemic has stepped up that timetable: digital transformation has arrived. Enterprises have been forced to adapt to a new normal.

I don’t think connectivity is going anywhere, clearly. And I think enterprises all over the world will continue to favour on-demand, software-defined, automated, delivery platforms for infrastructure that is agile and can adapt to very rapidly changing demand sets.

What I think we’re likely to see in the next 3 years is an increase in demand for remote work. Data centres likely become more important, but office buildings could become much less important in the fabric of our economy. By moving to a remote-first culture, enterprises will no longer have to source talent locally. At the same time, bandwidth requirements will increase. Network connectivity will become even more important, as well as private access to the tools used to conduct business.

Enterprises will require secure access to the tools and applications they use every day to conduct business, from voice and video chat, to messaging apps, to file hosting and sharing platforms.

As an evolving workforce moves more toward remote work and digital infrastructure, security and reliability will be paramount. Services that expose personal data, or otherwise put the business in jeopardy, simply won’t be an option.