How Service Providers Win: Part 3 – Build Consistency

In this eight-part series, we examine the myriad ways service providers can get an edge over their competition, launch and monetize new services, attract new customers and, ultimately, increase revenue. Essentially, we discuss how service providers can win in this ever-evolving environment.

There’s a lot that can be said about consistency.

Fifteen-time Major League Baseball All-Star Tony Gwynn build a stellar career on his consistency at the plate, having a .338 career batting average and never hitting below .309 for a full season.

For service providers, as well as major leaguers, consistency is imperative.

Experience an outage? Oof!

Service can’t scale to meet demand? Oh no!

Suffer a cyber attack? Uh oh!

As an industry, we have the tendency to get caught up in the speeds and feeds. How fast is a service delivered? How much data can we cram in a pipe at a single time? What are the packets per second?

And while fast is good, consistent is better. Think of it this way: it’s better to have a slower connection that is available 99.999 percent of the time than it is to have an ultra-fast connection available just 50 percent of the time.

Consistency wins. And in the always-on, digital, connected world, consistency is the norm and therefore goes unnoticed. It’s inconsistency that gets the headlines.

But how do you employ a set of consistent services?

Here are four steps to service consistency:

1. Start internally: Ensure your network and security policies are enforced consistently across data centers and clouds and that they can be centrally managed from a single location. This ensures that your services are being delivered consistently regardless of where they live.

2. Ensure your infrastructure can scale: Consistent service delivery requires around-the-clock availability. That means your services can’t slow down during peak demand. Having a hybrid infrastructure where cloud bursting is an option — sending traffic to the cloud when the data center gets overloaded — can ensure a seamless service experience for your customers without breaking the bank.

3. Focus on security: A DDoS attack or any kind of breach can cause massive disruption. Ensure your network is protected from multi-vector DDoS attacks and other threats, such as malware that hides out in SSL encrypted traffic. Being proactive about security and mitigating threats as they arise will ensure your services are delivered consistently and unfettered.

4. Converge services: Service providers can harness the power of services consolidation and automation to drive operational efficiency. Network architectures that build on optimization and consolidation are key to achieving service continuity and a seamless user experience.

You want your applications to be delivered smoothly and uninterrupted. You want consistency. Following these steps will help you get there.

To discover first-hand how A10 Networks delivers innovative secure application delivery services for the world’s top service providers, contact us today.

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