Colleagues standing around a whiteboard

A consistent theme among enterprise networks–much like the organizations that rely on them–is that most have a unique personality. Though many of the high-level goals of automation (e.g., more time for value added work, fewer outages, etc.) are similar across enterprises, one organization’s strategy to adopt network automation will (and should) naturally differ from another. In this whitepaper, we’ve provided some ‘thinking points’ designed to help leaders decipher how to approach their automation challenges. They are by no means ‘one size fits all’ – there are many ways and varying depths to which an organization may adapt to automate their network infrastructure.

A reliable constant in this space is how much an IT organization’s culture, people, and alignment to the business impact the way technical solutions ought to be designed, delivered, and operationalized. More often than not, the technology and technical skills required to master infrastructure as code (IaC) and automation aren’t nearly as challenging as the organizational aspects

Indeed, the term network automation brims with idealistic visions of engineers spending time on strategic, value-added projects while mundane tasks become the domain of robots, pipelines, and scripts. But while a technology-first viewpoint has its merits for developing a strategic vision, it typically doesn’t itself result in what most organizations really need: the predictable, flexible, and stable networks without which digital businesses could not exist.

The reality is that most organizations encounter many of the same challenges to adopting network automation as others – some intrinsic, some complex, but many of them quite mundane and surmountable. And even then, not all of them need to be solved head-on. The following whitepaper aims to take an honest inventory of those challenges, along with some guidance on the best approach to overcoming them in a practical manner.

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