Business 411: Prepare for the unexpected

Is your organisation ready for the next big business disruption?

Johannesburg, 15 Apr 2020
Read time 3min 40sec

Companies of all sizes were caught unprepared for the current lockdown happening in South Africa and globally; their business continuity plans inadequate for the unprecedented events.

A majority of companies' infrastructure environments make it near impossible to move beyond simple backup and recovery. Companies discovered it was next to impossible to – at a moment’s notice – move the entire office to several remote locations.

While knowledge workers are typically able to operate remotely, other teams that are generally office-bound, such as administration and IT teams, who rely on the internal network, require secure access to the company’s internal network to gain access to internal applications and information; secure being the operative term.

For Dino Psoulis, Solution Architect – Aruba and HPE at Axiz, in the event of a disaster like the COVID-19 outbreak, it’s vital that network administrators can control their infrastructure while employees gain access to the company`s information and applications securely from anywhere.

“It’s in exactly these circumstances that Aruba’s Remote Access Solution with cloud or on-premises management platforms helps IT departments address,” he says.

“Aruba’s set of remote networking solutions provides IT with the capability to securely extend the corporate enterprise network at a lower cost and massive scale to easily overcome the complexity that makes traditional remote networking options poorly suited for wide-scale business continuity applications.”

Psoulis explains that by embracing a comprehensive business continuity strategy, which includes the management of the extended network/s, CIOs can focus on more business-related issues and challenges, leveraging Aruba’s management tools to deliver control, orchestration, automation and reporting capabilities.

And with cloud-based or on-premises solutions via Aruba Central or Aruba AirWave respectively, administrators can exercise complete control over their entire network, simplifying the deployment, management and orchestration of their extended network, from a single pane of glass.

“The focus of all the Aruba offerings is to offer solutions that simplify the lives of those tasked with managing these networks,” says Psoulis. “By taking advantage of artificial intelligence it’s possible for many tasks to be automated, for problems to be anticipated and for the system to build up solutions around those issues, such as switching to a backup link should the main connection fail or prioritising traffic to ensure business-critical applications get the bandwidth they require.”

Fortunately, with the multi-functional Aruba Remote Access Points (RAP), it's possible to deliver a secure and fast wireless and wired network access as an extension to the corporate network, anywhere, using the remote site`s Internet connection. Especially since the Internet is involved, data traffic between the company’s controller and the RAP is VPN encapsulated, through an encrypted IPSec tunnel.

All non-company-related traffic will not go through the VPN tunnel and there is no need to connect to the company’s VPN on one`s device, as the RAP and controller make the connection automatically if authorised to do so. Any of the Aruba Instant Access Points (IAP) can be converted to and from RAPs and will not lose their normal IAP functionality, at no additional cost.

“While most organisations expect their remote worker to provide their own infrastructure, by using the capability of the RAPs, it becomes possible for network administrators to monitor and manage all network connections, identifying issues ahead of them becoming a problem that might reduce productivity or affect security. By managing these RAPs as part of the network, it is also possible to simplify support calls,” he says.

Aruba’s Business Continuity Solution offers several unique capabilities, all designed to ensure companies stay online and secure, no matter what the circumstances. These include seamless application access, resilient WAN connectivity, always-on connectivity, zero-touch provisioning, wired and wireless security, a highly scalable solution, regulatory compliance and centralised management, to say the least.

Aruba`s proven Remote Access Solutions for Business Continuity delivers seamless user experiences, achieving this by focusing on stringent security, automation, orchestration, unified management and simplicity.