Enterprise Modernization: From Vertical Silos to an Innovation Platform

Discover how enterprises are pivoting away from vertically integrated applications in favor of a horizontal platform for innovation.

Small, medium and large enterprises have been captives of vertically integrated solutions at the edge for a long time. The organizational silos and the much-talked-about lack of alignment between operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) are often the reasons for such an inconsistent short-term approach.

Enterprise modernization relies heavily on edge-premise solutions to deploy private wireless and intelligent data management. Security, time to value and cost-effectiveness cannot be achieved if enterprises need to build a new stack from scratch for every new service they launch.

The most advanced enterprises are quickly moving from a short-term isolated and verticalized OT deployment environment toward a more consistent and long-term platform for innovation. They understand the modernization process as a continuous journey and look for the best combined total cost of ownership (TCO).

Opportunities and Challenges

Enterprises that want to modernize their business need to ensure the networks connecting their operational processes are robust and flexible enough to support an ever-changing ecosystem of operational innovation. Modern enterprise processes heavily use AI/ML and distributed ledger technologies. The underlying platform needs to be able to provide the upper layer applications with enough computing, storage and connectivity resources. It is also required to offer flexible network operations; IT teams change device access point names (APNs), move users between networks and activate and change privileges based on needs that emerge in real-time.

The challenge is that in mission-critical environments, waiting to implement the needed configurations is not an option. Operators need to abstract that complexity and allow enterprise customers to easily manage network changes on their terms and timelines.

Why Do Enterprises Need a Horizontal Network to Deploy New Services?

    • Self-Services – Enterprises need control and agility to manage the day-to-day network configurations without depending on external providers’ lead time.
    • Enterprises want multi-access –They need the diversity of multiple ecosystems, including 4G, 5G and Wi-Fi across the production environment. Deploying a single horizontal connectivity layer will enable them to explore the vast device ecosystem of 4G, the low latency and high speeds of 5G, or leverage Wi-Fi to steer the less critical traffic.
    • Simple deployment and operations – Edge applications and new use cases must be centrally onboarded, distributed, and managed throughout the life cycle. One single orchestration engine integrated into the edge platform can significantly simplify this process. A consolidated operations and management platform (OMP) from which OT and IT personnel can have complete control without navigating through a maze of separate complex systems.
    • Security Management – A common horizontal infrastructure allows corporate security policies to be defined and distributed from a centralized point updating the different layers of the network. Managing and orchestrating edge hardware and software in a coordinated way reduces security exposure and complexity.
    • Private/Public Roaming – The most relevant enterprise use cases get even better when used at different sites or from a public network. An underlying horizontal innovation platform can offer a seamless end-user experience, without requiring manual intervention, for example, to select SIM cards and service profile privileges.

Dell Technologies have been innovating at the edge with open disaggregated platforms and services to enable our Telecom and Enterprise customers to modernize operations and generate new outcomes. We partner with industry-leading companies to compose end-to-end solutions to reduce complexity and accelerate time to value. At Dell Technologies, we enable Communication Service Providers (CSPs) to deliver enterprises with dedicated networks tailored for performance and flexibility. More information and resources on this topic are available on our Infohub page.

Marco Castanheira

About the Author: Marco Castanheira

Marco Castanheira leads Services Edge Marketing for Dell Technologies’ Telecom Systems Business. With over 22 years of experience in Mobile Communications, Marco has led Sales and Marketing projects for tier 1 Communication Services Providers in LAT and the US in Core, RAN, and Edge Cloud. Passionate about technology and Photography, Marco lives in Frisco, TX, with his family. Friends regard Marco’s Brazilian Style barbecue skills, especially his famous six hour beef ribs!