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Networking Unplugged

Perspectives on cloud networking and software-defined WANs

Posted June 25, 2013
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Veracord's Virtual Office - Lose the Land, Not the LAN

I started out my career at the AT&T Bell system (anyone remember that?) working on deploying X.25 packet networks and ISDN.  Moving from proprietary protocols to open standards gave companies more choice with vendors and lower cost options. However the new network did not change basic business operations. Now, with cloud networking, companies are reinventing themselves because the network enables a new way to work. One business leader with a vision is David "Park" Schutz, the founder and CEO of a staffing and consulting company called Veracord.  His story demonstrates the power of cloud networking.

Park has three priorities at Veracord: grow the business, hire people traditionally excluded from the labor market, and facilitate work-life balance for his employees. Each of these objectives requires a secure, flexible and affordable networking solution enabling his employees to work from home. And IT is not Park’s area of expertise – but without an IT Manager, it is his job.

Veracord originally had one “brick-and-mortar” office that housed an internal server and five local employees.  The remaining 17 employees all worked remotely. These remote employees used a patchwork of services to share files and access a proprietary application that runs on the office server. Park had tried file-sharing solutions like Dropbox, but coordinating file transfers added frustrating delays, and the possibility of security breeches was always a concern.  He knew that to reach his ultimate goal of virtualizing the company he would need to invest time and money into a solution.  However, he was not prepared for the complexity and cost of a hardware-based VPN solution.

When Park learned about Pertino, he immediately recognized an opportunity to eliminate the company’s physical office and move his operation to a virtual space.  Within minutes he was able to test-drive his own secure Pertino cloud network by installing the client on his server and a few laptops.  This was all the proof he needed.  He relocated Veracord’s server to his home office and added his employees and server to the network in a fraction of the time it would have taken to set up a hardware network.  Not only was he able to do it himself, he was able to save a tremendous amount of money on lost productivity, hardware costs and IT man hours.  In a short amount of time, Park’s business had become entirely virtual. Now all Veracord employees have secure access to the files and applications they need to serve Veracord clients.

But wait, there’s more.  Park saw an unexpected benefit -collaboration has actually improved.  Users are now all working with the latest versions and all documents are saved in a central location enabling faster and better collaboration.  And Park says his talent pool just got larger too.  “I have an aspiration to hire disabled people, veterans and working moms. Now with Pertino, I can hire anyone, anywhere.”  Now that truly is a new way to work.

Park estimates he is saving over $30,000 per year on office space and another $600 per month on gas.  Eliminating his commute has repaid him in ways that cost savings never could.  He is now able to devote more time to exercise and, more importantly, his family. “I have 3 kids, so if I could spend less time commuting, I could then spend more time at home.  So the Pertino solution not only had economic value, but value to me personally.”

Pertino’s Cloud Network Engine is a long way from the days of X.25 and ISDN.  Companies now have the freedom to make decisions based on their people and business needs rather than traditional notions of office locations and IT resource access.  Without all the complexities and burdens associated with networking, companies are now able to focus on what really matters…driving the business forward.  Hats off to Park for making great decisions for himself, his family, his employees and his customers.

Larry Stein

Larry Stein

Director, Marketing

This is Larry’s fifth startup over the past 15 years, during which he navigated two IPOs and two acquisitions. Before Pertino, Larry served tours of service with Ameritech and data communications training.

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