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More Benefits of SD-WAN

In Telecommunications on February 4, 2021 at 6:32 am

Pivotel Networks

Today’s IT challenges have evolved. As organizations use SaaS (Software as a Service)  and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) across several clouds, IT teams are soon discovering that the quality of the user application experience is compromised. This is because WAN’s (Wide Area Networks) are not equipped to handle the exponential traffic growth brought about by cloud adoption.

SD-WAN (Software-Defined Wide Area Networking) addresses these challenges.  This virtual WAN architecture allows enterprises to use any combination of transport services – including Fiber, MPLS, LTE, and broadband internet services – to connect users to applications. This helps lower operational costs and improve resource usage for multisite deployments. Network administrators can use bandwidth more efficiently and ensure that critical applications run smoothly without sacrificing security or data privacy. Let’s discuss some of these benefits in detail.

Cost savings

SD-WAN helps streamline operational expenses; it allows IT teams to replace reliable but expensive multi-protocol label switching (MPLs) services with affordable options like broadband and secure VPN connections. Traditionally, organizations retain MPLS for latency-sensitive, real-time transmissions while Fiber, broadband internet or LTE is used for email-traffic and less critical transmissions.

Investments in new technology is a significant capital expenditure. Shifting to a monthly, subscription-based SD-WAN service translates to more savings. These types of savings are just the beginning because SD-WAN also has a lot to offer in terms of improving productivity, accelerating time to market, and efficient configuring and troubleshooting.

Jumpstart your digital transformation

Enterprises that see SD-WAN as a strategy for launching and equipping digital transformation efforts are more likely to realize the full benefits of utilizing it.

Launching new cloud applications is easier with SD-WAN; users can expect high availability and predictability especially for critical enterprise applications. It helps free up enterprise IT to focus on bigger technology goals and driving business objectives.

Businesses can map simpler and more cost-effective branch WANs with SD-WAN, allowing them to use cloud solutions without being heavily reliant on IT teams for troubleshooting or connectivity issues. 

Thinking about SD-WAN only as a replacement for MPLS connections is a short-sighted strategy. Organizations must plan in such a way that the networking strategy is at the forefront to equip digital transformation as a future-proof technology.

Choose your SD-WAN provider with care

As the demand for SD-WAN solutions increases, companies are marketing their offerings as SD-WAN products even if these do not have true SD-WAN capabilities. Before implementing a solution organizations must conduct a comprehensive needs assessment and vet potential providers with care. Choose an SD-WAN solution that has integrated security features. Go for a solution based on the level of maintenance and management that you’re capable of handling in-house versus a third-party provider.

The good news is, you don’t have to hold different meetings with different service providers. Business phone systems provider Pivotel Networks will do the legwork for you and find the best SD-WAN solution for your business. Get in touch for a free, no-obligation audit and quote today.

Based in Nashville and serving Middle Tennessee, business phone systems expert Pivotel Networks strives to be your advocate and ally in an ever-changing world of telecommunications and technology. Call (615) 499-7900 for more information.

A Guide To Choosing An Asphalt Paving Company For Your Home

In Sealcoating & Striping on November 27, 2020 at 4:46 pm

Hargrove Sealcoating

If you’re a homeowner looking for an asphalt paving company in Nashville or Murfreesboro TN, going through numerous websites and reviewing different cost estimates can be overwhelming. It’s a choice that should be made with care as the quality of work could affect the overall look of your home.

Knowing what to look for when choosing an asphalt paving company can help you identify reputable contractors from mediocre ones, and you’ll arrive at a decision much faster. Here’s what to keep in mind while you’re doing your research.

Check their portfolio

An asphalt paving company confident with their skills will proudly showcase their previous projects. Consider it a red flag if they’re hesitant to provide any details; this could mean a lack of experience.

It’s best to work with a local asphalt paving company; they would know the area, terrain, weather conditions, and permit requirements. Hargrove Sealcoating, for example, has been proudly serving  Columbia, Spring Hill, Franklin, Brentwood, Thompson’s Station, Lewisburg, Murfreesboro & Nashville for over a decade.

Make sure the asphalt paving contractor is fully insured

While hiring an uninsured contractor seems to be the more affordable option, it will cost you more in the long run. Any liability from an on-site mishap will be taken from your home insurance policy. 

Observe their choice of materials

A professional asphalt paving contractor will only use high-grade materials for their projects. They know using anything substandard will affect the quality of the asphalt paving and ultimately, their reputation. 

The right asphalt paving contractor will know what materials are suited for specific projects. You can be assured you’re getting the most out of your investment.

They are fully equipped to do the job 

A reputable asphalt paving company will have top-of-the-line equipment to do asphalt paving jobs, regardless of project size. This helps ensure that the project will be completed on time and according to client specifications.

They have a skilled team onboard

While some asphalt paving contractors hire only a few team members to cut down on costs, reliable asphalt paving companies have highly-trained teams big enough to complete the job skillfully and within schedule. 

The asphalt paving company knows how to build a strong foundation

The quality of an asphalt driveway largely depends on what’s beneath it. An expertly constructed base layer ensures that the asphalt paving will last for years without any major damage. A professional asphalt paving company would also know how to install the right drainage system.

Be on the lookout for scams

There might be cases where a contractor offers to do the asphalt paving project at a considerably low price, using materials left over from other projects. They sound like they know what they’re doing and will work hard to win your trust.

Keep in mind that this kind of work did not take into account your project’s exact requirements. The quality would speak for itself eventually – ask yourself if it’s really worth the risk.

Check project quotes for transparency

When evaluating an asphalt paving company in Nashville or Murfreesboro TN, make sure they are upfront with the time and budget required to complete the project. They should also be available for a low-pressure, hassle-free consultation session to address any concerns you might have. 

Professional asphalt paving contractors have been in business for years and with good reason – they have the expertise to take any paving job imaginable. Consider yourself in good hands should you get to work with one.  

Serving Columbia, Spring Hill, Franklin, Brentwood, Thompson’s Station, Lewisburg, Murfreesboro, and Nashville, Hargrove Sealcoating specialists provide asphalt paving repair and replacement services. Call them today at 931-619-6718. One of their service advisors will be happy to assist you.

5 Tips To Involving Your Team In Social Media

In Public Relations on November 9, 2020 at 5:12 pm

McKeeman CommunicationsAccording to a WordStream article, more than 56 percent of adults online use multiple social media platforms; 75 percent of men and 83 percent of women who use the internet are on Facebook; there are more than 500 million user profiles on LinkedIn, and nearly 80% of all social media activity is taking place on mobile devices.

With these figures, organizations should have realized by now the importance of maintaining a presence – and engaging – on social media. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are not going anywhere anytime soon, and they provide instant, 24/7 access to their target audience.

If you are on top of your company’s marketing strategy and are working with PR firms in Raleigh NC, you could encourage the rest of your team to advocate for your brand through social media. Here’s why it’s important, according to everyonesocial:

  • Employees have an average of 1,090 social connections
  • Employees have 5x more reach than corporate accounts
  • Their followers are 7x more likely to convert

A Nielsen study found that 84 percent of people trust recommendations from people they know over other forms of marketing.

While your company’s social accounts are important for sharing, interacting with customers/clients, and establishing a brand presence, PR firms in Raleigh NC will tell you that it is your employee’s social connections that will increase brand visibility, generate quality leads, and drive web traffic.

And yet, employees have reservations about engaging in social media. Some of the factors that hold them back include not knowing what content to share, not having time to post on social, not wanting to share work-related content; and believing that they don’t have enough followers to create a difference.

It can be challenging, but there are ways to get your team onboard and engage on social media on behalf of your company. Here are a few tips:

  1. Educate your team. Make them aware that the likes, shares, and comments on the content they post all contribute to the brand’s success.  

Teach your team the basics of good content creation. McKeeman Communications, a top PR firm in Raleigh NC, shares some video recording advice: phones should be held horizontally, the video should be shot in a quiet location with a distraction-free backdrop (bonus points if the company logo can be subtly included in the shot), and there should be generous amounts of natural light. There should be pauses between questions and answers to allow space for editing.

  1. Have a clear social media policy. Before asking team members to be brand advocates, simple and straight to the point social media guidelines should be in place. Vague instructions on what – or what not – to post will make them reluctant to share anything on social media. Make sure they are visual examples and all policies have been reviewed as a team.
  1. Communicate early and often. Sharing the company’s mission is just as important as having a clear social media policy. This will serve as the rationale behind social media initiatives and how these initiatives help achieve the organization’s overall goals. 

Build trust by being transparent with your goals, having open communication lines, and sharing monthly reports on social media efforts. Knowing that they are making a difference will encourage your team to participate more.

  1. Make it easy and fun! While social media participation should not be mandatory, make it fun for those who do participate by giving them incentives. It could be anything from a free lunch to gift cards, extra time off, donations in their name, or a recognition. Setting up a leader board brings out everyone’s competitiveness, driving participants to share more.

PR firms in Raleigh NC suggest keeping team members engaged through entertaining 

            polls or quizzes. Start conversations on trending topics, and interact with their posts.

  1. Allow for collaboration and feedback. Schedule regular meetings with social media participants to ask for feedback, report observations, answer any questions, share best practices, and assess what’s working and what isn’t. There are no right or wrong answers; keep the discussion casual so everyone remains open to suggestions for improvement.

While employees won’t mind sharing company-related content, they also do not want to sound like a hard sell. PR firms in Raleigh NC recommend allowing them to share quality third-party content. This helps employees showcase their knowledge, paving the way for bigger professional opportunities.

With careful planning and encouragement, the best brand champions can be found right there in the workplace. Your team can help your brand build rapport and overall trust with their social connections.Looking for top PR firms in Raleigh NC? McKeeman Communications is an independent PR agency working with companies that are experiencing rapid growth or change.  We help localize and share messaging that builds awareness and trust for their brand. We can help you take on a total team approach when it comes to your social media strategy. Sign up here to receive a copy of our Social Media Policy Guide.