Planning For SDN by Jim Metzler
I believe that SDN represents a fundamental change in terms of how networking is performed. Few IT organizations are able to successfully implement such fundamental change without first establishing a plan that starts with reaching agreement inside of the IT organization as to what they mean by SDN and what they see as the value that SDN might be able to provide to the company.
A key component of an SDN plan is the identification of the appropriate stakeholders. IT organization must implement a communications plan that keeps these stakeholder in the loop throughout the entire evaluation process and must ensure that their concerns are incorporated into the business plan that the organization creates to justify implementing SDN.
As part of the SDN plan, IT organizations must determine if they will buy best of breed products and take on the role of systems integrator or if they will buy a system solution. This determination is just one consideration that influences which vendors IT organizations should look at. Other considerations include whether or not the vendors provide open solutions across all of the layers of the SDN architecture, whether or not they have already deployed high value use cases and whether or not they have a lot of networking experience.
Another key part of an SDN plan is to determine whether or not to leverage the expertise of an experienced professional services organization. HP is an example of a company that offers professional services to help IT organization migrate to SDN. The services that HP offers helps IT organizations to achieve enterprise/IT alignment, to understand issues with the current network such as lengthy provisioning intervals and to identify and quantify the SDN value proposition.
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