New Talari CEO Q&A: Circuit Flexibility Key to SD-WAN Success


…change two weeks ago (which was actually one week after I was on board) where we got the entire sales organization together, and we gave them the directive that we would be 100 percent channel focused. Their compensation, their activities, should be primarily focused around assisting the channel … training the channel and helping them be successful. As you know, you have to do more than that, because it has to be a lifelong commitment, and it has to be a commitment from the company itself to make sure that you’re doing deal registration, that you’re making sure that you’re providing the right services and the right knowledge base for those channel partners, because you can never allow for a channel partner to look bad in the eyes of their customer due to the vendor. You’ve got to become a company that recognizes that responsiveness to the channel is paramount because they have to be responsive to their customer. When you’re talking to a channel partner that has a need, you have to be 100 percent as responsive to whatever the needs of the channel partner is as if they were the end user themselves, because they do represent the end user. The investment for us is in changing the go-to-market model, compensation, training, activities and overall commitment.

CP: What trends do you see in the SD-WAN market, and what are the primary challenges?

PS: The trend in the SD-WAN market is that from an infrastructural standpoint, lots of companies have MPLs today and are looking to add internet as their alternative and lower cost way of expanding their bandwidth connectivity, but they’re so far unwilling to give up their MPLS, usually because they have an absolute dependencey on high quality that they’re nervous about giving up, or because they have a private data center or a public data center or a legacy application running in a hybrid data center, and they want to make sure that they still have that great connectivity and reliability. The challenge in the SD-WAN market is making sure you support any and all types of connectivity without making that end user commit to a fixed telco or a fixed circuit provider. Because if you try to move them to SD-WAN and if you do move them to SD-WAN, the benefit is quality, fail-safe quality through vendors like Talari, where you’re going to get great connectivity. The packets are going to arrive on time. You’re going to have perfect voice-over-IP irrespective of whether it went outbound by MPLS, internet, satellite, whatever it might be. You want to make sure then that the customer doesn’t wind up being fixed on a particular type of circuit, because they should have circuit transportability. And one…

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