Skills gap remains a top barrier to SD-WAN adoption

SD-WAN security drives selection, skills gaps remain a primary obstacle to adoption, and adoption continues to rise, according to Masergy.

SD-WAN adoption barriers

The survey, conducted in partnership with IDG Research, analyzed responses from IT decision makers in global enterprises across a variety of industries. This survey was also conducted in 2017 as a benchmark in order to measure SD-WAN trends over time.

Optimizing the network to support cutting-edge technology stands out as the most prominent objective that was covered in the survey. Most survey participants find that security is the biggest WAN challenge, even outweighing cost concerns. Managing numerous users, devices, and locations is also an increasing pain point.

SD-WAN adoption barriers

Key findings from the 2019 survey include:

  • Optimizing the network to support cutting-edge technologies remains the top WAN objective (61%) among survey participants.
  • Security (50%) is the top WAN challenge and the leading factor (81%) guiding companies in the SD-WAN selection process.
  • The skills gap (46%) remains a top barrier to SD-WAN adoption, whereas concerns regarding interoperability with existing WANs are less prevalent than they were two years ago.
  • SD-WAN adoption rates increased from 35% to 54% over the past two years, with 90% of respondents’ actively researching, piloting, actively using or upgrading SD-WAN.
  • Network management simplification (46%) continues to be the top expected IT benefit of SD-WAN adoption, and the top three expected business benefits of SD-WAN are increased efficiency, improved security, and cost savings.