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Pros and Cons of Managing Your SD-WAN Network On Your Own

August 8th, 2022 | 4 min. read

By Jordan Pioth

computer on a table with a notepad and pen

If you’re in the market for SD-WAN, you may have specific questions to learn more about the product.

Maybe you are unsure about another organization having access to your network or you want full control over your network so you want to know if you can manage your SD-WAN network on your own.

Either way, here at Coeo, we want you to have the best experience possible when it comes to managing your SD-WAN.

There are some organizations that are better off having their SD-WAN network managed and some that can manage it themselves just fine.

Either way, we’re here to be transparent and give you all of the information on everything telecommunications related.

By the end of this article, you’ll be able to tell whether or not you can manage your own SD-WAN network.

To give you more information on if you can manage your SD-WAN network or not, we will talk about managing your SD-WAN network and the pros and cons of managing your SD-WAN network.

Managing your SD-WAN network on your own

SD-WAN or Software Defined Wide-Area-Network, is an overlay network that is built on top of underlying network connections whether it be over fiber, LTE, or broadband.

SD-WAN is applied as a software network of SD-WAN appliances, connected by encrypted tunnels.

The short answer to if you can manage your SD-WAN network on your own is yes. Most providers will give you the option to manage your SD-WAN network if you want to.

However, some companies will not allow you to manage it on your own so if managing your own SD-WAN network is important to you, you may want to make sure you look for a provider who allows you to do that.

Here at Coeo, we offer a co-managed solution that Coeo manages but the customer can monitor.

Coeo will do all of the management with the network as well as the security however, you will have access to analytics and will be notified of any changes such as outings or updates.

These analytics can be very beneficial to you when it comes to checking how much your SD-WAN network is benefitting your business.

Coeo’s default co-managed solution allows customers to change some options within their SD-WAN network. This is a feature that is different from larger corporations that do not allow for much engagement at all from the customer.

For more complicated changes to your SD-WAN network, you can open a ticket with us at Coeo for a change and the request can be taken care of in about 4 hours.

If you would like to pass your firewall to have access to a website or document that is blocked, you can disable that yourself to allow for this access.

You can manually disable your firewall for specific access if necessary.

Everyone wants to make sure that their investments are profitable and helpful. With the co-managed solution offered by some providers like Coeo, you can do that while still having your network taken care of.

Coeo offers this co-managed network by default no matter what. Coeo does, however, allow you to manage your SD-WAN network on your own if you choose to do so.

Pros of managing your SD-WAN network on your own

There are a few pros to managing your SD-WAN network, mostly around control - especially if you’re a bigger company.

Full control over your SD-WAN network

Of course, if you or your team are managing your SD-WAN network then you will have full control over everything involving your SD-WAN.

This makes it a little more customizable even though in most scenarios, your provider will work with you on what you want out of your SD-WAN.

IT team can get involved

If you are a bigger company and have your own IT team, you can rely on them to manage your SD-WAN network.

Typically your IT team will know more about your network than your provider and most providers like Coeo will train your IT team if you want to manage your own SD-WAN.

Cons of managing your SD-WAN network on your own

Just like with just about anything in life, where there are pros, there are also cons. In this section, we will go over some of the cons of managing your SD-WAN network, mostly around experience, time, and price.

No experience

Of course, if you have your own IT team, this shouldn't be an issue but most smaller companies can’t afford to spend money on an IT team. If you are trying to learn how to manage your SD-WAN yourself you are bound to make mistakes.

These mistakes could be as daunting as making your network vulnerable to cyber-attacks if not managed properly.

No time

Once again if you have your own IT team this won’t be as big of an issue but either way, everyone already has a job to do.

You and your employees have work to get done every day as it is and adding another job to manage your SD-WAN can make things more difficult.

We’ve found at Coeo, that most customers who want to manage their own SD-WAN to start out, end up with too much on their plate and ask Coeo to manage it for them.

Your SD-WAN is typically the same price managed by you or the provider

Most providers will still charge you the same price whether or not you are managing your SD-WAN.

You managing your SD-WAN on your own could be the same price as the provider managing it anyway so you’d be paying for the service whether you use it or not.

If you would like to learn more about SD-WAN you can read our SD-WAN Buyer's Guide:SD-WAN BUYER'S GUIDE

Next steps to figuring out whether or not you should manage your SD-WAN network

Now that you know that you can manage your SD-WAN network with most providers you just need to figure out if that would be beneficial to your organization or not.

The first thing you have to figure out is if you have an IT team or an employee that would understand SD-WAN and be able to take the time each day to manage it.

If you do, then maybe it would be a good idea to manage your SD-WAN network yourself but if you don’t, you’re better off letting your provider manage it for you.

Of course, you want as much control and as much information as you can get when it comes to your SD-WAN network.

You will be able to access the analytics and data even if you have a co-managed solution, especially with Coeo.

Here at Coeo, we have helped thousands of customers install SD-WAN products and continue to see them as one of the top needs of the marketplace.

We take pride in being fully transparent with our future and current customers on all things Coeo and telecommunications-related.

If you would like to speak with our team to learn more about SD-WAN or ask any questions you may have you can schedule an appointment. TALK TO AN EXPERT

Now you know the pros and cons of managing your SD-WAN solution on your own. Read this article to learn the factors that affect the cost of SD-WAN so you can determine if it is a good fit for your organization:

Jordan Pioth

When he's not creating content for Coeo, Jordan loves to watch sports, hang out with friends and family, and anything sneaker-related.