Cisco Solution Support or Smart Net: Which is Right for You?
If something breaks in your multi-vendor technology environment, who are you going to call? Given the intricate web of IT products and vendors today’s organizations leverage, it’s a question not so easily answered. Cisco’s 2020 CISO Benchmark Study found 86% of organizations use technologies from as many as 20 separate vendors. While trends of vendor consolidation are present in that figure when compared to previous studies, the potential for finger pointing and choruses of “not my product” remains frustratingly high.
One possible response is to invest in technology support that is solution-focused rather than product-specific. Cisco Solution Support delivers that by pulling back and looking at the full spectrum of components making up a system or function. This means investigating and analyzing technology from Cisco as well as from outside vendors. Granted, as a Cisco service, the environment should consist of roughly 50% Cisco solutions in order to see the best results.
By investing in Cisco Solution Support, organizations gain access to:
- a singular resource who will manage remediation efforts from the moment a ticket is opened until it’s marked complete
- additional 24/7 support from Cisco’s deep pool of technology experts, whose knowledge and experience stretch beyond the Cisco product stack, covering innovations from other industry-leaders
- priority service, including 30 minute SLAs for high-risk scenarios, to ensure ongoing ready access to the experts required to get a problem solved and get an organization back on the road to normalcy
- full diagnostic capabilities, allowing organizations to present just the issues they’re seeing without the need for providing theories as to what may have gone wrong or the product responsible
- a comprehensive approach to problem-solving that seeks out and considers other possible symptoms that may have yet to fully rear their ugly heads
Cisco Solution Support: By the Numbers
In the right situation, utilizing Cisco Solution Support can have a massive impact on organizational IT environments, from a technological, budgetary, and efficiency perspective. Cisco has recorded improvements such as:
- 21% fewer issues requiring IT intervention
- 32% boost in IT staff efficiency
- 17% reduction in five-year operational costs relating to hardware
- 9% lower hardware costs in general
All told, Cisco predicts organizations will experience a 213% ROI on a five-year investment into Solution Support.
What’s covered under Cisco Solution Support?
As for its coverage area, Cisco Solution Support casts a wide net. Here’s a partial list of disciplines and stacks in which it can help:
- Contact Center
- Data Center
- Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI)
- Azure Stack
- Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)
- Enterprise Networking
- Digital Network Architecture (DNA) suite
- Workplace Analytics
- Connected Manufacturing technology
- Remote and Mobile Assets
- Next Gen Firewall
- Identity Services Engine (ISE)
- Email Security Appliance
- Advanced Malware Protection (AMP) for Networks
Cisco Smart Net or Cisco Solution Support?
Of course, we’ve documented another Cisco support tier rather extensively on this blog in the past: Cisco Smart Net. It’s worth emphasizing that Solution Support shouldn’t be viewed as an automatic replacement for Smart Net. Which option makes the most sense is dependent upon the needs of the individual organization and its specific use case.
Organizations that believe they could benefit from one or more of the Solution Support features covered above may want to explore that avenue further. Meanwhile, Smart Net may ultimately make a better fit for organizations that:
- fall short of the 50% rule
- have the expertise (and bandwidth) necessary to triage problems in-house before involving a support partner
- prefer support tied to a product as opposed to a broader solution
- prioritize Cisco technology not covered under Solution Support
Next Steps: Protect your IT environment and your ability to serve your customers
Want to learn more about Cisco Solution Support? Can’t decide on the right level of support for your business? Arraya Solutions can help. Our Inside Sales Engineering and Cisco teams have the knowledge and experience to help you determine your level of exposure so you can more confidently choose a support option. Reach out to Arraya today to get the conversation started.
Visit https://www.arrayasolutions.com/contact-us/ to connect with our team now.
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