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Many organizations feel continuous financial pressure to cut costs and streamline operations due to economic factors like the ongoing threat of a recession and global supply chain interruptions. Network automation can help companies across all industries save money during lean financial times. A recent Cisco and ACG Research study found that network automation can reduce OPEX by 55% by streamlining workflows such as device provisioning and service ticket management. Though they aren’t mentioned in the study, additional savings are generated by using automation to avoid outages and accelerate recovery efforts.

This post discusses how to save money through automation and provides a network automation cost savings calculator for a more customized estimate of your potential ROI.


Table of contents

How network automation provides cost savings

Network automation reduces costs by streamlining operations, preventing outages, and aiding in backup and recovery workflows.

Network automation saves money by solving problems

Problem: High OPEX

Solution: Automation tackles repetitive tasks like new installs and ticketing operations, which helps you generate revenue sooner and reduce the time and resources spent on maintaining operations.

Problem: Too many outages

Solution: Automation allows teams to be proactive by leveraging critical data to identify potential problems before they cause outages, freeing them from the typical break/fix approach.

Problem: Slow recovery

Solution: Automation speeds up processes like backups, snapshotting, and device re-imaging, which makes networks more resilient by accelerating recovery from outages and ransomware.

Reduces OPEX

The focus of the Cisco/ACG study was the economic benefits of streamlining network operations through automation. For example, the OPEX (operational expenditure) involved in spinning up a new branch is too high because deployments require so much work, time, and staff. Using automation to provision and deploy new resources can significantly reduce the time it takes to spin up a new branch, which means the site could start generating revenue much sooner. Using automation to monitor device health and environmental conditions could extend the life expectancy of critical (and expensive) equipment while reducing the number of on-site staff needed to maintain that equipment.

Network automation reduces OPEX by increasing the efficiency of repetitive or tedious tasks like new installs, incident management, and device monitoring. Crucially, automation does so without reducing the quality of service for end users and often only improves the speed, reliability, and overall experience.

Prevents outages

Network downtime is an expense that cash-strapped businesses can’t afford to bear. According to a recent ITIC survey, a single hour of downtime costs most organizations (91%) over $300,000 in lost business, with 44% of enterprises reporting outage costs exceeding $1 million. However, preventing downtime is difficult when most network teams are caught in a reactive break/fix cycle because they lack the staffing, resources, and technology required to maintain visibility and identify issues before they occur.

Network automation solves this problem using advanced machine learning algorithms to analyze monitoring data and identify potential issues before they cause outages. For example, AIOps (artificial intelligence for IT operations) solutions provide real-time analysis of infrastructure, network, and security logs. AIOps is adept at recognizing patterns and detecting anomalies in data so that it can identify issues before they affect the performance or reliability of the network.

Accelerates recovery

While network automation helps to reduce downtime, it can’t eliminate outages altogether. When outages do occur, recovery is often a long, drawn-out process involving a lot of manual work, during which time revenue and customer faith may be lost. Network resilience is the ability to quickly recover from ransomware, equipment failures, and other causes of downtime with as little impact as possible on end users and business revenue. Automation speeds up recovery efforts in a few critical ways:

  • Streamlined backups – Automation makes performing regular backups and snapshots easier, reducing the risk of gaps or inaccuracies.
  • Reduced imaging delays – Automatic provisioning ensures that clean systems are spun up quickly so that business can resume as soon as possible.
  • Faster failover – Automatic network failover and routing technologies can reroute traffic around downed nodes before a human admin has time to respond, providing a more seamless end-user experience.

Network automation is a direct source of cost savings because it reduces OPEX without negatively impacting the business or customer experience. Automation also indirectly saves money by helping organizations avoid outages through proactive monitoring and maintenance. In addition, network automation technologies make businesses more resilient by speeding up recovery efforts when breaches and failures do occur.

Network automation cost savings calculator

ZPE Systems provides network and infrastructure automation solutions for any use case, pain point, or technological need. ZPE’s vendor-neutral platform allows you to extend automation to every device on your network, including legacy and mixed-vendor solutions, so that you can achieve true end-to-end automation (a.k.a. hyperautomation). For a customized estimation of how much money you can save by automating your network operations with ZPE Systems, check out our network automation cost savings calculator.

Ready to Learn More?

For help with the network automation cost savings calculator or to learn more about automating your network operations, contact ZPE Systems today.

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