14th October 2021

There is no such thing as a single site business anymore

A one-office business is no longer a single site network. Applications and data are now being accessed from an array of locations and helping businesses optimise this traffic opens up some much more interesting conversations. Our Head of Products and Marketing, Neil Wilson explains why, and how to kickstart these conversations.

Internet access used to be just one of many forms of connectivity into a business, with much of a company’s critical applications and data held within the office, and customer contact primarily done over the phone (and even fax!)

The internet, as such, was a luxury for many businesses, and was simply a component of the suite of tolls that a business used to operate, expand and grow.

In the last 5 years however, a lot has changed.

Societal and lifestyle changes have driven the mass adoption of flexible working, which puts significant challenges on the accessibility and availability of essential business tools far outside the office. As a result, there has been a massive uptake in the "as a Service culture" offering businesses unprecedented flexibility and commercial optimisation from solutions like IaaS, SaaS or UCaaS.

With the ISDN switch off rapidly approaching, internet access is how a business does almost everything, not just access data and applications, but also how it contacts and communicates with its customer base.

None of this should is new news however – especially following the last 18 months. What is significant now when speaking to partners is how to translate all of these changes into upsell conversations with businesses. Conversations more advanced than asking ‘do you need more bandwidth?’

It’s time to realise that a one-office business is no longer a single site network because applications and data are now being stored and accessed from an array of other locations, and helping businesses to optimise and secure this traffic opens up some much more interesting, business outcome-focused conversations:

How do you communicate and transact with your customers if your internet service goes down?

Resilience is a necessity for most businesses. From a coffee shop that cant take card payments, to 1000-employee offices unable to access Office 365, conversations about Physical, Carrier or Technology diversity should be a no brainer. We even have a CPE promo running to make these even easier!

How do you secure your data?

Every connectivity solution should have security built in, but how up to date is that solution? How often is it patched and maintained, and who by? Converged management of your internet access and firewalls make a lot of sense.

Where are your critical data and applications located?

For your customers running services via the big Cloud vendors such as AWS, Azure, GCP and Oracle, direct connectivity can not only keep their data secure, and assure end-to-end control of the traffic, but for high users, it can also be cheaper to run through reduced ingress and egress charges. It’s as straightforward as adding a new VLAN on the existing connectivity.

How do you optimise application performance?

SD-WAN is not just a multisite experience, its very relevant to individual sites by giving visibility and control of application performance, and therefore the end user experience. When combined with private connectivity to the Cloud vendors above, you can ensure your customers maximise their ROI on these environments.

What is your customer’s digital transformation strategy?

For customers not already using the cloud (where the above questions come into play), migration will surely be on their agenda, and they will be looking at their options. Whether that’s sweating existing hardware investments with a move to Colocation, or a migration to IaaS, these are both in the heart of our network, and consumption of and access to these locations is very straight forward, and simple.

Basic, single circuit internet access is really only the start of the conversation now. In all of the above cases we have managed products available off the shelf that you can use to start conversations about how your customers are operating now, challenges they are facing and medium term strategies. As well as providing the perfect foundation for the rest of the products and services you sell.