Just Keep Moving: Digital Transformation Across South Florida
South Florida is a global gateway to both North and Latin America. As such, it’s become a dynamic, diverse regional market that attracts enterprises from around the world and scales locally-grown firms quite quickly. Fortunately, CenturyLink’s recent fiber optic network expansion has created more bandwidth and more opportunities in the region for our customers.
I grew up in Miami and now serve as the General Manager for CenturyLink. I see many of my customers at high-school reunions, Little League baseball games, or out on the golf course. One of the things I’ve always loved about South Florida is that people here are always on the move–jogging along the beach, salsa dancing late into the night, or making reservations at the newest culinary hot
Many of them are also moving to take advantage of the diverse business opportunities South Florida provides. It’s a very supportive community, and that atmosphere is a big reason that South Florida is growing so fast. We have a mix of established industries like travel, transportation, entertainment, and finance, alongside countless startups with dreams of growing into sustainable enterprises. As the region continues to expand and diversify, CenturyLink is actively investing to stay ahead of the needs of our customers, and our network expansions are adding more connectivity throughout Miami-Dade County, Broward County, and beyond.
It’s that network which serves as the backbone for anything our customers want to do here, and these expansions are accelerating business growth exponentially. Lower latency for cloud assets serving Latin America? Check. Connect your US-based operations to European headquarters? Check. Move up the stack from a niche to the mainstream? Check.
Stream a video on how to make the perfect cup of Cuban coffee? Por supuesto!
It’s More Than Bits and Bandwidth
Expanded bandwidth is of course part of our strategy to help customers open strategic opportunities. Just as South Florida is a cultural gateway between North and Latin America, CenturyLink serves as a technical gateway between businesses. As more buildings come onto our network, more companies access our undersea links between continents; European companies, for example, are increasingly setting up facilities and operations down here. Our network quite literally opens up the world for them.
Of course, these network expansions are about more than just bandwidth. A network is a foundation for business growth. It enables digital commerce and allows our architects and experts to help customers take advantage of the cloud in myriad ways. They can utilize edge computing and reduce latency issues by moving more of their key assets closer to their own customers.
Today, we are actively engaged in helping a variety of companies manage their growth, even in our current moment of uncertainty and recovery. Some customers have found a niche in e-commerce and have been scaling like a rocket launch as people order more of what they need from home. To seize those opportunities, everything needs to scale at once. Your cloud resources need to scale swiftly, and you might add cloud vendors to go to a multi-cloud approach. There’s application stress as orders are processed and supply chains have to respond. You might also want to add other services such as Cloud Application Manager to help you handle the new reality. All this growth needs to be managed, and your network is at the center of it all.
Every situation is different, of course, and a pandemic has a way of making those differences huge. While some customers are managing unexpected growth, other customers have seen their business curtailed by social distancing. For them, resilience is key. Business continuity takes on new aspects and urgency in such times. Helping them scale down–without inhibiting their ability to scale back up when the crisis passes–is important. Or there might be aspects of their business they can emphasize even while they reduce others. That might mean reallocating priorities for different applications across the network.
Needless to say, we’re going out of our way to support customers during this turbulent time. But that’s just part of the story. A lot of our work is strategic and ongoing. Digital transformation is about re-architecting the whole business, not just IT operations.
Data: The New Oil
With adaptive networking, businesses can also find new leverage over their single biggest business asset: data. Data isn’t just about the bits of e-mail attachments flowing from one office to another, though those are certainly important. You’ll often hear tech people say that “data is the oil of the 21st century.” If we think of oil as the 20th century’s primary way of moving things and people around the globe, the analogy is spot on.
Data in motion is one of the keys to success in the 21st century. We are collecting more and more data at the edge, through customer interactions or the use of sensors and the Internet of Things (IoT). Analytic tools are brought to bear on that data to create business insights. Those business insights are then redeployed to drive your business faster. Our local teams are bringing in our professional services consultants to build the data analytics processes which will optimize how our customers collect, process, and analyze data – and how they then act on the insights they gain from that analysis.
My team and I are actively engaged with customers to help them architect and manage all this digital infrastructure. The pace of change is accelerating; so, whether you’re the head of a global enterprise, the CEO of a brand-new start-up, or just a coffee-loving golf enthusiast like myself, we all need to keep moving to stay ahead of the curve.
Taking on digital transformation can be challenging. See how CenturyLink can help make the transition easier.
This article was originally published on LinkedIn on May 4, 2020.
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