EAD: Why do my customers need faster speeds?

EAD: Why do my customers need faster speeds?

EAD: Why do my customers need faster speeds?

The UK’s appetite for data does not seem to be slowing, in fact, it’s growing! Having already risen dramatically over the past 18 months, the connectivity needs of businesses are predicted to continue to rise, as operations embrace cloud services, digital transformation and home working.

To get a glimpse into the future, we commissioned Savanta, an independent research agency, to conduct a study examining how customer connectivity needs and bandwidth requirements are changing amongst UK businesses, publishing the results in a recent whitepaper.

You can download the full whitepaper here, or continue reading for a shorter summary.

Hybrid working

The idea of homeworking was nothing new at the start of the pandemic, it just wasn’t necessary for many operations. One of the very few silver linings of the global calamity was that businesses realised the broad business benefits, such as disaster recovery, increased agility and staff having more control over their work/life balance.

75% of businesses with multi-site operations saw an increase in ethernet connectivity demand over the past 18 months.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that all those extra emails, video calls and file downloads caused a 50% surge in data traffic. Thankfully, our network had the additional capacity to handle the demand (and more!).

But for businesses, this trend will only continue as more data is produced, more applications transition to the cloud and geographically disparate collaboration continues to gain popularity.

Although employees working remotely will primarily be using their own personal internet networks, business connectivity needs are still affected:

• Firstly, by the routing of this traffic through company systems when users are accessing shared services.

• Secondly, by the explosion of hybrid video call meetings, leading to vastly increased bandwidth usage from those (smaller number of) employees in the workplace.

Therefore, if a business only requires 700Mbps for all their current traffic, would you rather suggest a 1Gbps fibre line (with only 300Mbps of expansion available) or a 1Gb line on a 10Gb EAD bearer?

We’d recommend the latter…

Common challenges

We’ve all had a laugh at the one person whose video freezes during a lengthy Teams call (or been the one who froze), so it may come as no surprise that 95% of leaders surveyed in our whitepaper advised that they had experienced connectivity issues over the past 18 months.

If issues appear too often, not only does it affect productivity, but especially for IT staff, it can be disheartening and stressful, as they a more likely to take the issues personally as they are responsible for the smooth running of systems, but aren’t necessarily ‘to blame’.  

Top three connectivity challenges:

  • Video calls lagging or dropping out
  • Difficulty accessing non-cloud-based business systems remotely
  • Difficulty accessing cloud-based systems

And it isn’t just with hybrid working solutions where connectivity issues are biting. More than 1 in 4 businesses (27%) that use on-premise connected devices such as EPoS or CCTV have experienced connectivity issues with this equipment over the past 18 months.

One of the reasons why solving connectivity issues can be so stressful for IT leaders is that many are reliant on multiple third-party solutions; having to deal with the complexity of identifying exactly where the problem is, liaising between multiple points of contact, as well as managing internal expectations.

Thankfully, EAD solutions may alleviate a significant amount of these issues, consolidating services under one roof, simplifying the job of IT leaders and removing painful management problems.

Cybersecurity

Then you’ve got to consider the ever-increasing risk of businesses suffering some form of cyberattack – from phishing to highly-complex, international DDoS attacks, such as SolarWinds.

In the first four months of 2021, the National Cyber Security Centre handled more than 3x the incidents compared to all of 2019!

Upgrading to a high bandwidth EAD solution, where all the connectivity needs can be consolidated, ensures that different elements of the security set-up are more consistent with each other, with different security systems specifically designed to work in tandem.

Even for smaller business, having several different solutions across smaller bandwidth solutions can leave them vulnerable to multiple angles of attack. This is concerning considering the typical SMB’s desire to lower costs rather than invest in what some consider a ‘nice-to-have’, though those businesses couldn't be further from the truth!

Future planning

Hybrid working, in some form or another, will be here for the foreseeable future, and if businesses are to grow and thrive, they need to be prepared.

With intra-team communication relying on connectivity, reliable services remain at the forefront of growth enablement. This means any conversation on connectivity should focus not only on the customer’s current needs, but how the solution can futureproof their future growth.

92% of IT leaders expect their bandwidth needs to surpass 10GB in the next 5 years!

Considering all these factors, statistics and our own real-world experience, it’s clear that Dedicated Leased Lines, specifically Ethernet Access Direct, is ideally placed and will become more sought after as businesses reach the limits of FTTP and require a more bespoke solution.

80% of IT leaders said ethernet will play an important role in their future connectivity plans!

EAD doesn’t only provide a solution ‘for today’; it provides futureproofing against end-users’ future growth and connectivity needs, as we accelerate towards our 10GB future.

The increased reliability and simplified problem solving provided through 10Gb EAD solutions can dramatically reduce the negative experiences of IT leaders, as well as mitigate business risk, with the chance to consolidate services under a single provider.

And the best news is that TalkTalk Wholesale Services is ideally placed to help you educate your customers on the benefits of EAD, assist in your solution design and delivery, as well as ongoing support.

For more information, please contact your Account Manager.