Connectivity; the forgotten component to digital transformation

Since the cloud’s inception, digital disruption has been accelerating at a rapid rate. In fact, more than 80% of companies use a multi-cloud strategy, usually in a hybrid model. On average, companies use an average of 4.8 clouds, causing a lot of hapless juggling in an attempt to provide critical services to the organisation.

Juggling all these services takes a lot of time, which we all know is in short supply across many IT departments. Plus, in addition to this, they rely heavily on a certain level of connectivity services to function at an optimal level. Until now, organisations have essentially been managing this conundrum either one of two ways;

  • By accepting that time away from actioning business outcomes is a necessity, diverting some resources into managing the growing number of cloud providers and making the most of the skilled workforce that remains.
  • Or, by shoehorning the business into cloud services that offer an imperfect fit, in an attempt to reduce time spent managing providers and minimising visibility problems.

Now, it’s safe to say that neither option is ideal, but there’s an integral component in all of this that often gets pushed to the side, or considered as an afterthought – connectivity. Judging from what we see, organisations traditionally choose to renew their 12, 24, or 36-month ISP contracts without appropriately considering their options, and how the connectivity component impacts the current and future success of their digital transformation.

In the digital age technology proliferates, and the rate of this proliferation will continue to grow exponentially. So, when evaluating your network connectivity, it’s imperative that you not only address your current needs, but also lay the foundation for potential requirements in 2-3 years’ time, and future proof yourself. The complexity of your environment will increase, as will demand, so you need a network that is scalable and can act as a bridge to your organisation’s digital future.

Organisations need to look at connectivity as the underlying component that facilitates digital transformation. For example, hybrid environments that have business critical and backup data sets in multiple locations require a robust network connection to function optimally. In the same vein, to successfully deliver services via SaaS applications and web browsers, the ability to optimise particular workloads and reduce latency is imperative.

We understand that for many organisations, managing IT requirements means dealing with a number of different vendors, which often leads to disjointed systems. And being able to easily take care of your network by simply renewing what you’ve been using for a decade eliminates one more headache. But this stop-gap solution presents a number of challenges without addressing the future success of your digital strategy.

At Somerville, we recommend to our customers that they consider an aggregated network that is robust, and scalable with direct links to the cloud services they wish to use.

The Somerville Connectivity Gateway offers entry to end-to-end cloud and hybrid IT services that cover the entire spectrum of an organisation’s connectivity needs, from a single virtual access point.

Once connected to the Somerville Gateway, our team recommend and implement a mix of connectivity and cloud services based on the customer’s specific requirements. It’s a digital transformation solution built from the bottom-up; First and foremost, you address the underlying connectivity by implementing an aggregated network that is scalable. From there you can adopt a step by step approach to transformation, depending on your budget, requirements and desired outcomes.

For example, an organisation might wish to start with solidifying business continuity, so a Backup-as-a-Service (BaaS) model is adopted. Six months later budget is allocated to hand over infrastructure management to free up the internal IT team’s time, so an Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) model is added to the agreement.

In short, regardless of whether an organisation’s digital needs lie in hybrid cloud services, private cloud services, hosting, storage, backup or something else, it’s essential to first address the connectivity component. And with IT changing constantly, knowledge is imperative, so having a partner that lives IT full time and provides holistic services is invaluable.

Get in touch with our friendly expert team and begin to assess the forgotten component, imperative to your organisation’s digital future.

Q&A Series – How the Somerville Connectivity Gateway enables better organisational outcomes – Osh Ranaweera

Osh is inspired by technology and new thinking. As a motivated Network Manager, he has helped formulate the national network team at Somerville to be ready for the new challenges technology constantly brings. Osh has a proven track record and hands-on experience in all areas of networking, and focuses on enhancing the Somerville national network to continually improve Somerville’s connectivity services.

Q: Osh, thanks for your time. Can you start by expanding on Somerville’s core service offering for those who may not be familiar?

Osh: Sure – Somerville works with customers across a wide range of IT services including hybrid IT environments, private and public cloud, co-lo, infrastructure-as-a service, security, business continuity and systems and networking.

There are two overarching facets to Somerville’s service offerings: networking systems and service delivery. Our network team operates across Australia to deliver Connectivity and Cloud networking solutions. Our service delivery team focuses on cloud service and connectivity delivery, which is where the Somerville Gateway comes in.

Q: Tell us about the Somerville Gateway and how it works.

Osh: The Somerville gateway is a single, secure access point to a suite of Connectivity services that enable access to our multi Cloud managed services, including IaaS, BaaS and SaaS. Once a customer is connected to the Somerville gateway, a member of the Somerville team recommends and implements a mix of connectivity and cloud services based on the customer’s specific requirements.

Q: What gaps in the market does the Somerville Gateway fill?

Osh: Very few companies cover the whole IT stack. Somerville isn’t just an ISP or a managed services provider – we offer end-to-end cloud and hybrid IT services that cover the entire spectrum of an organisation’s connectivity needs.

For many organisations, managing IT requirements means dealing with five or six (or more) vendors, which can quickly lead to costly operational inefficiencies and disjointed systems. With the Somerville Gateway, everything is taken care of with one monthly bill.

Once you’re part of the Somerville Gateway ecosystem, you can also pick and choose different solutions as your needs change. Ultimately, this allows our customers to be more agile and only invest in solutions that provide tangible benefits to the organisation.

Q: What problems does the Somerville Gateway help solve for customers?

Osh: Customers want to focus on business outcomes, so they’re looking directly at how IT teams can drive those outcomes – not get bogged down juggling day-to-day IT requirements. They want to have small on-site IT teams that have the freedom to focus on innovation and growth. Corporate customers especially are happy to outsource IT functions, but they want one point of contact though, not two or three.

Somerville partners with organisations to look after the nitty gritty and provide end-to-end services so they can focus on what’s important. With IT changing constantly, knowledge is imperative, so having a partner that lives IT full time and provides holistic services is invaluable. We offer a single pane of visibility, which helps reduce ambiguity, cost and complexity.

And, if a customer is looking to move into a hybrid space, they need a strong network for those solutions to work, so the Somerville Gateway is vital.

Q: What outcomes can an organisation expect as a result of moving to the Somerville Gateway?

Osh: Because every engagement with our customers is personalised, the outcomes are different from customer to customer depending on their requirements. We engage with the client on a consultancy scale to outline and identify the right solutions based on their unique needs.

Above all, though, we’re here to fulfil a need, whether that be hybrid cloud services, private cloud services, hosting, storage, backup or anything else. Through the Somerville Gateway, our customers can move from a CapEx model to a more cost-effective OpEx model where their whole suite of connectivity and IT services is centrally managed by Somerville.