Riverbed Global Survey 2017: The Digital Tipping Point Is Near

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Digital transformation is the future, but how close are we to the reality? To help answer this Riverbed just released the findings of its Future of Networking Global Survey 2017, compiled by polling 1,000 large-enterprise IT decision-makers from nine countries.

To successfully embrace digital transformation, organizations must transition from legacy infrastructures to next-generation technologies like cloud and software-defined networking (SD-WAN). The survey's results show that this work has only just begun, and suggests directions decision-makers could pursue to accelerate the transformation.

Read on for selected highlights from the survey's results, or download the entire report here.

"This survey and the resulting data reveal the tremendous pressure that IT decision makers are under to execute their cloud strategies, achieve digital transformation, and keep pace with the speed of innovation that is the norm in today's hypercompetitive markets," says Jerry M. Kennelly, CEO of Riverbed Technology.

The legacy problem

97% of respondents acknowledge that their legacy network infrastructure will have difficulty keeping pace with changing demands of cloud and hybrid networks, as legacy networking technologies are incapable of providing the agility, performance, or end-to-end visibility into network and application behavior required to ensure users a secure and satisfying digital experience.

In fact, when asked what would prevent their cloud strategy from achieving its full potential, 69% of the study group laid the blame equally on:

  • Their legacy networking infrastructure
  • A general lack of visibility into the cloud and cloud applications

All told, it's clear that legacy networks are dysfunctional for the business.

The cloud performance gap

Unfortunately, 85% of those surveyed also report that they are "several years away" from reaching the full potential of digital transformation. As the survey report notes on page 4, enterprises that delay digital transformation run the risk of putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage.

Consequences can already be felt: 93% of respondents agree that their legacy infrastructures lead to cloud-related network issues at least once a month, while a whopping 58% report the same several times a month or more. Productivity suffers for lack of an infrastructure capable of supporting today's increasingly cloud-based workloads.

The SD-WAN tipping point

According to 98% of those surveyed, the writing's on the wall: emerging SD-WAN technologies will be key to solving the aforementioned problems.

And while only 4% say they currently benefit from SD-WAN technology, this number will skyrocket to 52% within two years and 93% within four. It's clear that the tipping point is right around the corner.

When asked about the specific benefits of these software-defined networks, the responses were very closely grouped, as seen in Figure 1. (Source: Riverbed Future of Networking Global Survey 2017 Infographic.)

Riverbed Future of Networking Global Survey 2017 Infographic.

These results show that decision-makers already understand many of the benefits their businesses stand to reap through the adoption of next-generation networking, and that they are very close to pulling the trigger in large numbers. The tipping point is nearly here, and enterprises must move forward or get left behind.

Learn more from the full report

For more insights on the interplay of legacy networks, next-generation infrastructure, and cloud computing performance read the entire 20-page report, Future of Networking Global Survey 2017.

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