IPAM and SD-WAN: What They Are, and Why Companies Need Them


Most companies have at least some degree of online activity these days. Very few of them can get away with not having at least a business website. Many others also employ a proprietary software suite their workers can use to do their tasks from remote locations, as well as exchange messages, have digital meetups, and so forth. Because of this, IPAM often becomes vital for them.

IPAM can be a confusing concept for individuals who are not very tech-savvy. We’ll talk about what it is in this article, as well as why so many companies need it. We’ll also go over SD-WAN, a related concept.

What Exactly is IPAM?

Source: Adfontes Software SolarWinds Distribution Partner

IPAM is shorthand for IP Address Management. It’s on online methodology. You use it in computer software when you want to manage or plan IP address use and assignment, as well as closely related computer network resources.

You need IPAM because it brings a centralized repository along with it. You can use it to create an IP address, subnet, and network system inventory. Your company admins can then maintain current, accurate IP assignment and available address records.

According to efficientip.com, IPAM relates directly to SD-WAN. The efficient IP company has this to say about SD-WAN: it was born as enterprises required cheaper bandwidth and “more nimble ways of deploying and operating WAN networks,” especially with the requirements of Digital Transformation.

What is SD-WAN?

Source: neosnetworks.com

SD-WAN is another acronym. It means software-defined networking, and as a company, you use it in a wide area network. You need it because it can simplify vast area network operation and management. This management can quickly become unbelievably complex if you don’t use an SD-WAN to control the whole process.

SD-WAN decouples network hardware from the control mechanism you’re using. The reason you want it is because it can reduce your overhead costs. It can also substantially increase your network performance. It cuts back on potentially expensive routing, which can completely blow your operational budget if you don’t install a reliable SD-WAN system.

It also gives your business flexibility. You can use it to access multi-cloud services, which comes in handy if you’re spending a lot of time online and you have a ton of data that your workers routinely need to access.

Performance Improvement

Source: Network World.com

Now that you understand the IPAM and SD-WAN basics, we’ll get into what SD-WAN can do for you in a little more detail. We mentioned performance improvement. You can’t fully understand the difference a SD-WAN setup makes, though, until you’ve installed one and look at your network functionality before and after.

Network traffic varies. Some of it is easy enough, but once you start to ramp up what your company is doing because you’re growing and adding more remote workers, you’re looking at a potential disaster unless you have SD-WAN.

You can use it to create what some in the professional world call “business-critical traffic.” Essentially, that means traffic that absolutely must get through because you’re operating under a tight deadline, and you need to satisfy an anxious client.

You might utilize a real-time service like Voice Over Internet Protocol, or VoIP. With SD-WAN in place, you can steer it through the proper route. You get high-performance, reliable connections every time. That’s how you can meet deadlines, boost staff morale, and keep your IT team happy.

SD-WAN Means Better Security

Source: Orange Matter – SolarWinds

If you have security concerns, SD-WAN can be your solution there as well. Digital transformation means you can extend market reach and virtually guarantee customer satisfaction. However, you also risk exposing various organizational aspects.

With cybersecurity threats on the rise, you want better network speed and connectivity, but you also need to protect all your sensitive communications. SD-WAN solutions have built-in security features that are nearly unparalleled.

You get a basic firewall and a VPN, at a minimum. However, you can also have your IT department install additional security features if you’re dealing with R&D communication between departments, such as if you’re developing new products and espionage worries you. The better your security, the less you have to worry about things like regulatory violations, legal liabilities, downtime, and data loss.

Lower Complexity

Source: Engage 365

The one other thing about an SD-WAN setup that we should mention is that if you have one, you have lower complexity than if you try to get along without one. Any digital transformation initiative will make a network more complex. The more complicated your company’s network becomes, the more likely poor network performance is.

SD-WAN lowers your IT burden. It simplified any WAN infrastructure so that it looks like a simple, easy-to-follow roadmap. That’s because it utilizes broadband to off-load any noncritical apps your business uses. It also manages your traffic through a centralized controller and automates many monitoring tasks.

Your IT department is going to love that. They don’t have as many things to worry about, and they can instead focus on other areas. The larger and more complex your network grows, the more you’re going to need an SD-WAN solution.

Reducing cost is one more area where SD-WAN and IPAM are going to help you. Organizations often deploy cloud-based resources these days. That means the data that travels through your WAN will keep increasing. That frequently means higher operating costs.

If you have an SD-WAN solution in place, you can reduce the overall price tag. You can reduce the traffic amount, provide direct cloud access, and leverage low-cost local internet access wherever you can find it.

The more you learn about SD-WAN and IPAM, the more you will come to understand how much they can do for you. As your company’s digital footprint expands, you can either deal with out-of-control costs and staggering data amounts, or you can manage them using a no-nonsense strategy and available technology.

Properly deployed SD-WAN can give you network functionality and security that no other current technology offers. The business benefits more than justify the cost, so find room in your operating budget for it without delay.