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September 27, 2017

Legacy networks see British businesses lose out to their rivals

Businesses are lagging behind with infrastructure, what more can they do?

By April Slattery

A fifth of UK businesses are using networking equipment that is over three years old, missing out on the benefits of newer products.

Businesses across the UK are falling behind their European competitors by not upgrading their networking equipment. A total of 20% of businesses in the country are using old equipment, compared to 8% of German businesses, according to research carried out by Ciena.

By not utilising the new equipment that is on offer, businesses are missing the chance to make operational and cost efficient savings and to better develop their businesses. Technologies such as high-speed Wi-Fi or maximising fibre bandwith are being missed out on, putting the UK behind European rivals.

Businesses could make big savings with new infrastrucutre

On average, a total of £161,000 is spend on data network infrastructure by UK businesses and a further £86,000 on WAN and interconnects. In comparison, German competitors spend almost twice as much, €326,000 on infrastructure and €140,000 on WAN and interconnects.

Wi-Fi technology, Ethernet protocols and support for broadband and fibre standards aren’t fully utilised by businesses, leaving them struggling to manage more data in and out of networks as well as within.

Hoping to improve internal data speeds between sites, 22% of UK businesses would invest in site-to-site fibre compared to 11% of German companies.

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Away from data centres, infrastructure is run for much longer meaning businesses aren’t keeping up with the pace with the rest of the IT elements.

Keri Gilder, Vice President and General Manager, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), Ciena said:  “As traffic volumes in both the data centre and in the office environment continue to surge, businesses are looking to extract maximum value from their infrastructure investments.

“Investment in external WAN bandwidth and interconnects is critical, but if it’s being connected to legacy equipment, the potential benefits of better and fluid bandwidth won’t be realized.”

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Ciena’s research revealed the services market is most likely to invest in data centre infrastructure. Over the last three years, investment into infrastructure, fibre, routers and cabling has been invested by 94% of the services sector.

Across other areas of the market, in the healthcare sector 92% companies have invested, 89% in financial services and 87% companies in retail. Almost half of those in the healthcare sector have invested in the last year.

Ciena’s research was carried out across 500 IT investment strategies, of 500 large British and German organisations.

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