April 27, 2012

Article

The corporate network is changing; IT needs to be ready

By Stephen Blankenship – Director, Product Management

CIOs and other IT leaders are facing major shifts in how technology functions in the enterprise. According to a recent Datamation report, the rise of the bring-your-own-device movement is acting as the catalyst for this change, which has really been in the works for years and could systematically alter how IT functions, especially when it comes to the network.

The news source explained that most corporate IT departments are like a castle, with a big moat/firewall on the outside with all of the important systems safely within, connected by the LAN. When users have to go outside of the fortification, they take a virtual private network with them, essentially extended the walls of the castle to meet their needs. However, this model of IT operating within corporate walls is only really effective when most of the work gets done in a single office, and that simply isn’t the case anymore.

With telework becoming more popular, branch offices springing up around the world and BYOD catapulting mobile work into relevance, the concept of a single corporate office filled with cubicles is something of a dinosaur. As these trends continue to grow, the report said, the corporate IT setup needs to change.

This shift is so considerable, the report said, that the LAN is already not relevant in many startup businesses and will become less and less important in major corporations as web-based applications and services become more prominent. Instead of delivering services to end-user devices with processing power and storage capabilities, IT is simply keeping the technology in the servers. This allows users to view those systems through the window of the end-user device, the report said.

This means organizations need to shift how they deliver video content to their employees. Cloud computing, BYOD and service-based IT are changing the network, and traditional systems are often not up to the task of handling the demands of these technologies or enterprise video programs. Sending video through the LAN and, especially, the WAN can create major issues, and organizations considering a large-scale video program need to turn to specialized technologies to meet their needs. As a result, companies need to respond to the shift in operational requirements by adjusting IT to the specific challenges posed by emerging solutions, including increased video use in the workplace.

-Stephen