BT Ireland https://www.btireland.com Mon, 13 Feb 2017 09:35:05 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.6.3 Make customer experience central to Digital Transformation https://www.btireland.com/make-customer-experience-central-digital-transformation/ Tue, 31 Jan 2017 14:32:13 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5914 The annual customer service event that BT hosts at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition is always guaranteed to show us how fast things change

The blog post Make customer experience central to Digital Transformation appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
The annual customer service event that BT hosts at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition is always guaranteed to show us how fast things change. It reminds us too that the touch point between companies and customers is one of the hottest places on the planet when it comes to the impact of new technology.

Gillian Chamberlain, BT’s General Manager of Marketing and Communications, put it in context at this year’s event – Navigation To Digital Customer Care. “The digital era could also be called the age of the consumer because technology on one hand and economic forces on the other are coming together to put power or control into the hand of the consumer,” she said.

There was food for thought for the CEOs in the room when she said that a company’s performance will be directly related to customer experience and not solely about the product or services they sell. This is why, she argued, customer experience has to be central to the whole concept of digital transformation if a business is to succeed.

Blue Dot Generation

Behaviourologist Ken Hughes would develop these themes in a riveting 50-minute tour of a fast-changing economy where old rules about customer engagement no longer apply. Marking out this landscape is the biggest hospitality brand that has no hotels rooms (Airbnb), the biggest media provider that doesn’t create or own content (Facebook), and the biggest transport company that doesn’t have a vehicle fleet (Uber).

New digital companies are overturning established business models and creating disruption at an unprecedented scale. Hughes described how Google Maps effectively wiped out the market for GPS products. Maps were also a metaphor to show how the consumer had changed. He unfolded one to accentuate the point, saying that people used to use them to find out where they were going. They’re not needed anymore because a new generation of consumers are the blue dot on their smartphone applications and everything comes to them.

Hughes calls them the “Blue Dot Generation”, millennials that see themselves as the centre of the world, with apps and social media at their service to get them what they want, when they want. He showed one video after another of how smart brands are satiating this appetite, quite literally in the case of the fast-food delivery service where all you need to order your favourite pizza is a button on your fridge.

People not botnets

Hughes touched on disruptive global trends including automation, which Nicola Millard, BT’s Head of Customer Insights, explored directly in relation to customer service. The rise in botnets is often seen as a sign that call agents will gradually find themselves out of a job but Millard provided a contrary view. She identified aircrews, nurses and customer service representatives as employees least likely to be replaced with machines.

“ They perform a pivotal role,” she said. “Getting better at that role adds more and more value to the organisation. Having someone who is phenomenally good over years and years of experience actually does add genuine value to the interaction. They are the roles least likely to get automated.”

If the challenges posed by Ken Hughes were sometimes daunting, Millard was on hand to provide some comfort. The world may be changing fast but customer service agents – people not botnets – are still going to be essential.

Watch highlights from the Navigation To Digital Customer Care event

The blog post Make customer experience central to Digital Transformation appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Racing Cars and Racehorses boosted by good science & BT technology https://www.btireland.com/racing-cars-racehorses-boosted-good-science-bt-technology/ Tue, 31 Jan 2017 13:51:38 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5909 A fascinating spectrum of technology was explored in just over an hour at the BTYSTE Mindshare event, from the Williams F1 team speeding up its cars thanks to better network technology, to teenage entrepreneurs improving the diet of racehorses

The blog post Racing Cars and Racehorses boosted by good science & BT technology appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
A fascinating spectrum of technology was explored in just over an hour at the BTYSTE Mindshare event, from the Williams F1 team speeding up its cars thanks to better network technology, to teenage entrepreneurs improving the diet of racehorses.

IDC analyst John Delaney took a high-level enterprise view, talking about the importance of digital transformation for every busy sector. Amazon’s plan for warehouses in the sky is a reminder, he said, of the level of innovation that retailers are competing against, but he made it clear that financial services and technology businesses face just as many challenges.

The way forward is what IDC calls the third platform where cloud, mobility social business and big data are parts of a new paradigm in enterprise IT. The cloud is a major step forward from the second platform, the client/server era. “You always have access to what you need and you always have access to the latest versions,” he said.

Delaney talked about the power of transformation, the use of digital technologies to run a business and operate in a fundamentally different way to reduce costs, be more productive and provide a better customer experience.  For Williams CIO Graeme Hackland the reason for leveraging a new wave of technology was more fundamental – to help win more races.

Networked cars

Williams approached BT to devise a network that could help compete better at 21 circuits around the globe, some of them in very remote locations. The network was needed to enable data from the cars to be shared in near real time with engineers in different places. BT delivered on the plan. “It happened very quickly,” said Hackland. “People don’t have to be in the factory any more. They can be anywhere.”

A 20-strong IT team has had to change its skillsets over the last three years as Williams migrated from servers and lengthy deployment times to the agility of the cloud. BT also worked with Symantec to provide a trackside network that was fast and secure. Penetration testing after last year’s British Grand Prix revealed vulnerabilities that have since been locked down. “I’m pretty confident we’ve built the layers we need to but you can never rest,” he said.

Williams has also been spinning out its advanced engineering and selling the technology to other markets. Technology in the left wing aerofoil of the car, for example, has been adapted for supermarkets to make cold aisles more efficient by funnelling cold air back into the fridges.

But the main focus is always the cars. “From an IT perspective we are driving the digital technologies that are being used by the team to make sure that we get from concept to product as quickly as possible,” explained Hackland, “that we can get an idea that comes out of our wind tunnel onto the car as quickly as possible because that’s the only way we’re going to beat our competitors.”

Horses for courses

There were clearly lessons here for big business who could also take something from Fenu Health, a start-up run by two sisters, Kate and Annie Madden. After much experimentation with 150 flavours and sample tests on 100 horses they discovered that an Indian herb, Fenugreek, helps prevent or manage mild gastric ulcers in horses.

The idea took the sisters to the BTYSTE finals in 2014. After that they discovered that 90 per cent of racehorses suffer from gastric ulcers, a high value market for their products opened up to them that they’ve been exploring ever since.

A true digital business, the girls have built a customer base by tapping into social media and using the technology at their disposal. “Our phone is our little online office,” said Annie Madden. “Pretty much we do everything on our phones; we do emails on the bus going to school and sell everything online through our web site. ”

The very idea that the sisters have employees who take care of the business while they’re in school raised a laugh from the RDS audience. Not for the first time, BTYSTE was showcasing why we should never be surprised at what young talent can achieve.



The blog post Racing Cars and Racehorses boosted by good science & BT technology appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Is a Terabit enough? https://www.btireland.com/is-a-terabit-enough/ Tue, 24 Jan 2017 09:25:46 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5893 New submarine cables are being laid across oceans capable of carrying the next generation in optical engineering capacity

The blog post Is a Terabit enough? appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
New submarine cables are being laid across oceans capable of carrying the next generation in optical engineering capacity. At the same time, existing undersea cables are being engineered to carry these new 100GbE optical channels. But will the deployment of the multiple terabits of bandwidth be enough to meet growing bandwidth demands?

Online commercial activity and particularly the development of video and music streaming services led to internet connectivity and demand growing faster in 2015 compared to 2014. The biggest increase has been in Africa and the Middle East. The highest accessibility rates are in North America followed by Europe and Australia, then other first-world countries.
Existing submarine networks and terrestrial systems are the backbone of the internet. While they are coping in the short term, there is a feeling within the industry that the increase in demand will soon outstrip available capacity. There are many reasons for this.
The Internet of Things (IOT) takes the internet far beyond the traditional interconnected devices, such as the laptop, smartphone and tablet, to encompass any device with an IP address. There are already around 6.3 billion connected devices operating under the IoT umbrella, and, according to Gartner, it could increase to 20.7 billion devices by 2020.

Fixing the problem

All of this creates monumental demand on available bandwidth that will affect both terrestrial and submarine network operators and providers. They will have to increase their bandwidth offering to ensure prevention of any failure in capacity provision.
The introduction of new submarine networks with multiple terabit transmission systems offer a short term “get out of jail card” for most network operators. They can avail of these services to provide the bandwidth needed for the increase in internet traffic.
Another way forward is enabling organisations to control their bandwidth usage more effectively. While there will always be business critical applications that demand quality of service (QoS) guarantees that eat up capacity, there are other applications running over MPLS bandwidth that could be redirected over the public internet.
The idea of intelligent networks that maximise bandwidth usage will move to a whole other level as software-defined networks move into the mainstream. Capacity planning and optimising traffic will become much easier with features like dynamic path control.

New models needed

The hard fact of life, however, is that existing next-generation networks (NGN), providing high data transmission services and capacity, are at their maximum limits and may not be able to cope to with ever-increasing demand. Network operators and providers will have to look at new deployment strategies and models, enabling them to compete and cope with the increasing demand for bandwidth.
The telecommunications industry has to design, re-design, and further develop networks to ensure it can handle the ongoing growth in demand. We are already seeing some evidence of this with the submarine networks capable of delivering multiple terabits and connecting Europe to the Americas, Africa and the Far East. The tentacles of these networks are being strengthened with increased capacity, but it remains to be seen, is a Terabit enough.

The blog post Is a Terabit enough? appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Serving up a Digital Ecosystem instead of “IT Spaghetti” https://www.btireland.com/serving-digital-ecosystem-instead-spaghetti/ Fri, 20 Jan 2017 09:40:53 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5882 Control, flexibility and adaptability. Having a hybrid mix of networks is a direct response to the hybrid cloud services that organisations now access to support their businesses. Different types of network [...]

The blog post Serving up a Digital Ecosystem instead of “IT Spaghetti” appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Business leaders who had their appetite whet by the Williams F1 team at the BTYSTE Mindshare event, found plenty more to feed on at the Digital Ecosystem Management (DEM) thought leadership session, not least an analysis of “IT spaghetti”.

Hosted by BT and BearingPoint, the agenda was about empowering enterprises with a type of platform that has made the likes of Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Apple the biggest companies on the planet.

Simon Torrance, Senior Advisor at BearingPoint, left the audience in no doubt that they had to do something because economic slowdown was affecting every sector. To reboot their businesses, organisations needed to confront key challenges that are undermining their growth prospects. Key among them are “IT spaghetti”, organisational culture, regulation, and, most worrying of all, the idea that core business models may be flawed.

Platform for change

The need to rethink strategies and business models is also being driven by what the World Economic Forum has termed the fourth industrial revolution, fused by the blurring of the lines “between the physical, digital and biological spheres”.

Having identified that digital platforms provide sustainable business models for the giant internet companies, BearingPoint set about developing something similar for all the other enterprises struggling with digital transformation.

To get new services to market quicker, firms need what Torrance referred to as “Ninja IT” as opposed to legacy IT, the spaghetti that creates silos and inefficiencies across a business. A platform gives organisations the pace and agility they need while creating an ecosystem for communicating and sharing information seamlessly with customers, suppliers and partners.

Barry Keane, Partner at BearingPoint, described the goal of a digital platform:

“It’s looking at the capabilities and products that companies have and how they can be bundled with other complementary products and services to deliver something in the future that will be expected as normal.”

Connected ecosystem

BT liked the idea so much that it took on the BearingPoint platform and made DEM central to its own business and stratgey. BT now it makes its same platform available to customers to use for their business needs, so they don’t need to invest and build their own,

John Gillam, CTO of BT Compute, described how the company’s DEM called ‘Compute Management System’ (CMS) replaces a silo or portfolio approach with an open ecosystem where disruption and co-operation contribute to business growth. He also talked about partnerships with the likes of Trend Micro for security and AWS and Azure for public cloud services. The BT endgame is a “single service experience” facilitated by a DEM platform that reinvents traditional business models for the digital age.

“We’re not doing anything we haven’t been doing for thousands of years. If you’ve got goods and services to sell you are going to exchange them for cash and there’s processes that makes it happens,” explained Gillam. He added:

“What has changed is the end-to-end delivery process that makes it a digital experience platform.”

Rather than build your own, like Airbnb, Amazon and Microsoft, BT is encouraging customers to share its platform. As a telco, BT is used to bringing services together for customers. With BearingPoint’s DEM platform, it’s simply taking it to a whole new level for the digital age. For BT it’s ultimately about putting choice and control in the hands of customers so they can grow their business in the digital age.

For more information about our Digital Ecosystem Management event please click here and if you wish to discuss further, please feel free to email me directly barry.mcmahon@BT.com

The blog post Serving up a Digital Ecosystem instead of “IT Spaghetti” appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Network Like Never Before Webinar: Your hybrid network questions answered https://www.btireland.com/network-like-never-before-webinar-your-hybrid-network-questions-answered/ Mon, 12 Dec 2016 13:51:53 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5802 Control, flexibility and adaptability. Having a hybrid mix of networks is a direct response to the hybrid cloud services that organisations now access to support their businesses. Different types of network [...]

The blog post Network Like Never Before Webinar: Your hybrid network questions answered appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Thanks to everyone who attended our hybrid network webinar last week. In our session, we discussed why businesses today may need to rethink their network strategy and the growing need to adopt or evolve a hybrid strategy. We got some great feedback – and a lot of follow-up questions.

Here’s a sample of some of the more general topics that came up in our Hybrid Network webinar.

Q: What are the business benefits of a hybrid Network (WAN)

A: Control, flexibility and adaptability. Having a hybrid mix of networks is a direct response to the hybrid cloud services that organisations now access to support their businesses. Different types of network – MPLS, Internet, Ethernet – have different features and value propositions. The trick is to match each one to the service it is carrying.

A hybrid network coupled with dynamic path selection can automate the choice of the best path for particular applications. And with application-based load balancing across all available connectivity, you can optimise your bandwidth utilisation. 
It’s all about getting the balance right – for example, not wasting money and resources on using more expensive MPLS bandwidth for non-critical traffic but retaining MPLS where business critical apps need those service levels & guarantees.

Q: What kind of organisations would benefit from moving to BT Connect Intelligence IWAN?

A: Our intelligent software-defined network enables centralised control of application performance across hybrid networks. We’re already seeing huge interest from retailers and other organisations with distributed sites that have mixed hybrid network and application performance needs. Financial services and healthcare will benefit from using a hybrid network to add extra layers of security, for example, but the bottom line is that any multinational with a global footprint and complex network requirements will find use cases that justify the investment.

Q: Can in-house apps run over BTs IWAN?

A: Absolutely. Any applications can be routed across BT Connect Intelligence IWAN and experience enhanced performance. We give IT and Network Managers the ability to classify over 1,200 applications by default. For in-house apps we simply add those to the application list with the performance parameters they require.

Q: What would be considered the industry best-practice way to evolve legacy network architectures to take advantage of SDN, NfV and SD-WAN?

A: Every organisation is at different stages of network evolution, some have recent investments they need to sweat; others are trying to integrate disparate technologies that came with acquisition. All are interested in next-generation network technologies like SDN (Software Defined Networking), NfV (Network Function Virtualisation) and SD-WAN (Software Defined Wide Area Networks).

The best approach is to identify the points in your global network that would give the fastest return on having the visibility and control that these technologies can deliver.

But approach carefully, you are dealing with nascent technologies where best practise rules are still being written. You will need a partner like BT that has the technical competency and experience to deploy them. You need someone with labs and testing facilities to replicate your application loads and services to optimise the opportunity. Ideally, they will also be able to identify opportunities to sweat existing assets, like being able to re-use existing customer premises equipment. We’re talking about evolution rather than revolution.

Q: Do these new technologies really put the power back into the hands of the CIO or IT manager?

A: This is facet of intelligent networks that strikes a chord with organisations struggling to manage increasingly complex IT environments. For the last few years we’ve seen the rise of “shadow IT”, where individual business units have gone off and done their own thing – sales signing up for Salesforce, HR to Workday or product development to Amazon Web Services. There is little or no consideration as to how it will impact on bandwidth availability across the rest of the organisation – hence the loss of power that the question alludes to.

The simple answer is “yes”, because software defined networks are predicated on providing central control and greater visibility of traffic and applications. If an organisation is getting to the point where it wants a single–window view of a global network, that gives it the ability to optimise services and maximise investments, it leaves little room for individual departments to go native and undermine the big picture strategy.

Click here to find out more.

The blog post Network Like Never Before Webinar: Your hybrid network questions answered appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Advanced Hacking Toolkit v2.0 Free Seminar https://www.btireland.com/advanced-hacking-toolkit-v2-0-free-seminar/ Wed, 07 Dec 2016 13:33:28 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5794 BT Training Solutions is running a Free “Advanced Hacking Toolkit 2.0” Seminar for our customers [...]

The blog post Advanced Hacking Toolkit v2.0 Free Seminar appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
BT Training Solutions is running a Free “Advanced Hacking Toolkit 2.0” Seminar for our customers.

When:      20th December 2016

Where:    BT Riverside Tower Belfast

Time:       10:30am- 12:30pm

Please email training.info@bt.com or call +44 (0)2890 212490  for more information or to book a place.

The blog post Advanced Hacking Toolkit v2.0 Free Seminar appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
BT Data Centre is now payment card industry certified https://www.btireland.com/bt-data-centre-is-now-payment-card-industry-certified/ Wed, 23 Nov 2016 13:27:36 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5791 I’m delighted to announce that BT Ireland has added another security certification to our impressive list. BT Ireland’s Citywest Data Centre is now Payment Card Industry DSS certified as a Level 1 Service Provider [...]

The blog post BT Data Centre is now payment card industry certified appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
I’m delighted to announce that BT Ireland has added another security certification to our impressive list. BT Ireland’s Citywest Data Centre is now Payment Card Industry DSS certified as a Level 1 Service Provider. This means our systems passed the most rigorous security requirements PCI DSS has to offer.

PCI DSS is an abbreviation for PCI Data Security Standard, the worldwide information security standard set by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council to help control and minimise points of risk to fraud or compromise of sensitive information. PCI compliance is an adherence of the policies and procedures that businesses handle information to the PCI DSS standard.

 Why it matters

Card fraud rates are on the rise and it’s more critical than ever to implement and actively maintain effective fraud prevention solutions that address security and customer experience needs. According to new global benchmark data from ACI Worldwide (NASDAQ: ACIW) and Aite Group, 30 per cent of consumers globally have experienced card fraud in the past five years.

PCI-DSS is applicable to businesses dealing with payment card data – storing, transmitting and processing. They need to be PCI certified, and increasingly, they want to ensure their ‘providers’ – such as BT – are certified as well.

There has been some confusion surrounding whether data centres need to be PCI DSS complaint. From a data centre perspective, there is no direct requirement to be PCI compliant. However, when a hosted customer is going for PCI-DSS compliance, the data centre needs to participate actively in the customer’s PCI programme. Ideally this means it should be compliant as well.

BT has a long history of working closely with our data centre customers to ensure a safe, compliant and successful hosting experience. We have been involved in many PCI audits, helping companies prove their compliance within the data centre.

We have now gone a step further and achieved our own certification for PCI DSS Version 3.2, making BT a Level 1 Service provider.

 Saving time and money

Keeping our customers secure and successful is the number one priority for BT. Being a PCI compliant data centre, we have the responsibility to provide the physical, environmental, network and infrastructure security that customers need to protect sensitive cardholder data and meet PCI DSS compliance standards. Now, instead of participating in individual customer compliance programmes, we can simply produce our own certificates to our customers, saving time and money.

It’s important to note that a company located within a PCI compliant data centre is not automatically PCI compliant. Again, each merchant or company claiming PCI compliance must have and be able to provide their own attestation of compliance via independent QSA (Qualified Security Assessor), detailing their sensitive information procedures as they follow the PCI standard.

Compliance is key

BT data centres comply with industry standards, so you can count on us to put the right controls, processes, and procedures in place to keep your assets in line with guidelines. Our Irish data centres are fully certified for ISO9001, ISO14001, ISO27001, and ISO20000 and we are dedicated to ensuring that we continue to develop and improve our processes to best support our customers

With data integrity becoming more important for more businesses, especially those with sensitive business information, a PCI compliant data centre guarantees that relevant data is protected to optimal security levels. At BT data centres, we continue to make security one of our top priorities.

The blog post BT Data Centre is now payment card industry certified appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Network & Cloud Services – What Roxy Music might have said https://www.btireland.com/network-cloud-services-what-roxy-music-might-have-said/ Thu, 17 Nov 2016 13:23:25 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5789 As the full consequences of the shift to cloud services become apparent, so too does the importance of the network. And today’s networks need to do far more than just ‘sticking’ services together [...]

The blog post Network & Cloud Services – What Roxy Music might have said appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Join BT and Current Analysis to discover how to unlock the full potential of network and cloud services – Register for our free Webinar today

As the full consequences of the shift to cloud services become apparent, so too does the importance of the network. And today’s networks need to do far more than just ‘sticking’ services together. As organisations shift from the traditional IT services world of client/servers and colocation relationships with data centres, to one where hybrid services are delivered from public and private clouds alongside legacy solutions, the network provides the commonality in an increasingly complex ecosystem. Embedded security and application performance management are now expected. And rightly so!

Bandwidth: ‘You never miss your water until your well runs dry’

As a consequence, you will need to make more considered decisions about the kind of networks you need. Not so long ago infrastructure requirements were more straightforward, based around a WAN that connected different sites to the head office and a data centre. While this remains a fundamental building block, it’s become simpler and more complicated at the same time. It’s simple to sign up for a third-party Software-as-a-Service product that only needs a subscription to activate, but it gets complicated if the application dips too deeply into the well of available bandwidth that it slows down email for everyone else, or if it inadvertently handles customer data in a non-compliant way.

Hybrid network: ‘C’mon, c’mon let’s stick together’

Hybrid cloud services demand hybrid networks, where different connections to different services can be optimised in terms of bandwidth, resilience and security, matching the network to the service or application that’s running over them.

In short, you need a ‘network like never before’ that will enable you to fully realise the agility and scale that prompted you to pursue a cloud strategy in the first place. The network doesn’t just provide a commonality, in the right hands it’s also a mechanism for controlling hybrid environments with an appropriate combination of MPLS and internet transport solutions.

Moves to cloud: ‘Much communication in a motion’

You’ve told us about your moves to cloud, and as a result BT began exploring ways to meet the needs of CIOs struggling with all this complexity. We came up with the BT Cloud of Clouds. Essentially, it’s a strategy for anchoring services on network infrastructure that can support and optimise even the most complex combinations. By wrapping all your multiple clouds into one single cloud, we enable you to manage and maximise your hybrid ecosystem.

The reason we can do it is because of BT’s long-term investment in networks, cloud services, professional services and security expertise. We have got to the point where any organisation can work with us and connect easily and securely to the applications and data it needs, regardless of where they’re hosted and where the organisation is based.

Cloud: ‘I began to lose control’

Our BT Cloud of Clouds strategy is all about control, enabling CIOs to orchestrate their cloud resources, wherever they are hosted. They do this with the BT Compute Management System (CMS), a single window for overseeing the rapid construction and ongoing operational management of digital ecosystems. It gives

CIOs visibility of how their business applications are performing and a way to ensure end users have the best possible experience.

A tried-and-tested CMS, it has been underpinning our cloud service offerings for several years. Now it’s ready to integrate with everybody else’s. It’s a unique solution, but don’t just take our word for it. The BT Compute Management System won the Open Digital Ecosystem award at the prestigious 2015 TM Forum Excellence Awards. These awards recognise the global leaders in communications and acknowledge the contributions that take the IT industry into new and innovative directions.

We can help: ‘Throw me a line’

With our global ecosystem of partners, networks and data centres, we can help multinationals align their technology to their strategic business goals. We can support them on their digital transformation journeys, connecting disparate parts of their businesses without relinquishing control. No business is going to be successful unless it makes the most of the cloud. Good preparation starts now, with a Cloud of Clouds strategy that delivers control, choice, flexibility and security, in one package.

Find out more: ‘Be prepared’

To find out more about BT’s Cloud of Clouds, sign up to the free BT webinar on Wednesday 23 November – Build your network to thrive in the digital age – where Current Analysis will join us (not sure about Bryan Ferry) to discuss market trends.

Register now to make sure you don’t miss out

The blog post Network & Cloud Services – What Roxy Music might have said appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Hybrid Network – music to the ears of the modern CIO https://www.btireland.com/hybrid-network-music-to-the-ears-of-the-modern-cio/ Mon, 14 Nov 2016 11:59:09 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5785 Networks have been evolving for years in both reach, and range of access technologies. At the same time their availability and capacity has become even more critical to doing business [...]

The blog post Hybrid Network – music to the ears of the modern CIO appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>

Borderline – feels like I’m going to lose my mind

Networks have been evolving for years in both reach, and range of access technologies. At the same time their availability and capacity has become even more critical to doing business. It certainly is no longer the case of deciding the access, port and Class of Service requirements of the network and letting it run until renewal time. This makes the role of a network administrator or CTO even more challenging.

Cause we are living in a material world

The demands made of network administrators have increased massively in recent times. This trend will continue as Boards of Directors are seeing the commercial benefits of moving to Cloud-based technologies. Organisations are seeking to leverage the use of Salesforce.com, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Office 365 and others, and now expect, to be able to drive the same cost efficiencies and flexibility out of the core network.

The underlying economic climate is forcing companies to review their networks and investigate whether there are more cost effective ways of connecting their sites than the traditional Layer 2 (Ethernet) and Layer 3 (MPLS) networks. There is also an expectation that the level of flexibility seen in data centre infrastructure should be available at a network level.

So how does a service provider, like BT, address those expectations? The way the market is heading, according to Gartner, is towards standardised hybrid WAN offerings that combine MPLS, internet VPNs, Ethernet services and local internet breakout with added security.

This is what BT calls an Intelligent Hybrid Network. By leveraging existing and emerging technologies we are able to address the demands for performance and agility as well as reflecting the desire for cost reduction. Analysts have recommended a greater utilisation of public access Internet technologies as well as continued use of private IP based WANs, and we see this as more and more companies move to use the Internet as a failover backup and even a primary access method for some sites.

Yeah, you made me feel shiny and new

By looking at the various Internet options available to customers today, BT is able to offer our customers a balance of cost control, flexibility and scale. In addition to private layer 2 and 3 networks, customers have the option of:

  1. using SLA-based, business grade Internet access in around 50 countries globally or
  2. lower speed, lower cost, contended or uncontended access in 190 countries or
  3. to offload low-priority traffic from their primary access onto the Internet

All of these options, from one supplier, all around the world. Combining these with our MPLS reach, across 198 countries and territories, forms the foundations of a truly hybrid network.

Simple? No. Are organisations going to abandon MPLS and move all of their business critical, time sensitive traffic to the Internet? Again, no. What the Intelligent Hybrid Network offers, especially when features like Fast Turn Up are used, are opportunities to connect more quickly and route traffic more cost-effectively without losing performance.

I made it through the wilderness…Didn’t know how lost I was until I found you

Networks are becoming more complex, with more options, and more opportunity to leverage additional services such as voice traffic on the network; as well as availing of all the 3rd party cloud services available in the market today. They are transforming faster than ever before, and BT is leading the way in making global networks simpler for our customers.

The intelligent hybrid network has come of age – to find out more sign up to the free BT webinar on Wednesday 23rd November: ‘Build your network to thrive in the digital age’.  It’s time for you to take the compass back. Join us and Current Analysis to find out how.

Register now to make sure you don’t miss out

The blog post Hybrid Network – music to the ears of the modern CIO appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Why CIOs need to rethink their network services https://www.btireland.com/cios-need-rethink-network-services/ Tue, 08 Nov 2016 11:50:26 +0000 https://www.btireland.com/?p=5782 The consequences of what the World Economic Forum calls the fourth industrial revolution may not be known but there’s a pretty good understanding of what’s driving it, which in turn provides clues as to how best an organisation can survive it [...]

The blog post Why CIOs need to rethink their network services appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>
Join BT and Current Analysis to discover how to unlock the full potential of network services – Register for our free Webinar today.

The velocity of change

The consequences of what the World Economic Forum calls the fourth industrial revolution may not be known but there’s a pretty good understanding of what’s driving it, which in turn provides clues as to how best an organisation can survive it. Adapting network services to cope will be key.

Cyber-physical systems, IoT (Internet of Things) and cloud computing are all enablers of the revolution, driving disruption on a scale that’s affecting organisations across every sector in every country. The velocity of change is unprecedented and we’ve already seen the first ripples of it wipe out entire businesses.

Organisations must build agility into their business ecosystems if they want to thrive in the bubbling cauldron that is the modern global economy, and leverage new technologies to stay competitive and avoid disruption. What’s become abundantly clear is that a review of their network services is now essential.

Getting the balance right with hybrid network services

To survive any transition, you need one foot in the present and another in the future. This certainly applies to the network, not least because it’s hard to swap out and upgrade infrastructure that your business relies on. You need to sweat existing assets while transitioning to new technologies like software-defined (SD) networks.

The short-term challenge is availing of hybrid network services that can support hybrid IT, public and private clouds as well as connectivity to your own data centre.

If you create a hybrid network based purely on the public internet, you won’t benefit from the class of service and security of a private network that an enterprise needs.

You need to combine MPLS and internet connectivity, offering different paths for different applications and services. This will allow the business to fully explore the benefits of performance, security, scale and cost savings within the network. Get the balance right and wasting more expensive MPLS bandwidth on non-essential traffic will be a thing of the past.

Future-proofing network services

The next step, the foot in the future part, is virtualised networks, giving organisations the same level of control and flexibility they have grown accustomed to in the data centre with virtualised servers. This is about software-defined (SD) networks that operate in line with application performance.

BT has been at the inception of new network technologies like NFV (Network Function Virtualisation) and SD networks – our Connect Intelligence IWAN product offering is an example. With an SD WAN your business benefits from an application-centric approach with full visibility of network, application and performance.

SD networks are the way forward for delivering the optimum end user experience across public/private networks, and controlling how and when bandwidth is allocated to ensure critical applications perform at their best, even in peak periods.

At the same time, network operations are greatly simplified because software functions can be moved to different locations in the network without needing to install new equipment.

Fully transitioning to virtualised network services is going to take time and money. Right now, what’s important is to reconfigure existing network assets to ensure the business can reap the business benefits of new cloud services – scale agility and flexibility – without losing control.

A properly balanced hybrid network will enable organisations to drive cost savings and improve performance across complex hybrid services. It means a business can start to take advantage of new technologies and be a part of the fourth industrial revolution, not a victim of it.

To find out more about hybrid network services, sign up to the free BT webinar on Wednesday 23 November 10:00 am (11:00 CET)– Build your network to thrive in the digital age – where Current Analysis will join us to discuss market trends.

Register now to make sure you don’t miss out

The blog post Why CIOs need to rethink their network services appeared first on BT Ireland.

]]>