For more than two decades, MetTel has been helping large enterprise and government clients connect with customers, partners and colleagues in smarter ways. What began as a regional communication solution provider in New York City is today a global IT communications organization and a Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ Leader. MetTel offers an extensive portfolio and unique combination of access aggregation, network and software management.

Several of MetTel’s solutions are built on VMware technologies. As part of its network connectivity portfolio, MetTel offers SD-WAN services built on the VMware SD-WAN platform. The company serves clients with some of the largest SD-WAN projects in North America, including the world’s largest specialty retailer, a constellation of banks via the world’s largest fintech organization, and leaders in automotive distribution and environmental management. The MetTel services—delivered through thousands of VMware SD-WAN devices—boost the performance and resilience of vital applications, including real-time voice and video.

MetTel has been expanding its VMware-based infrastructure used for running its SD-WAN services to better serve global clients. By partnering with VMware, MetTel built a global cloud network of new data centers and points of presence around the world using hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). These data centers enable MetTel to provide SD-WAN and SASE (secure access service edge) services while controlling costs and complexity. The company has also implemented a VMware Cloud on AWS disaster recovery solution to help ensure business continuity in the event of issues with any of its data centers.

What Is Hyperconverged Infrastructure?

Discover how you can increase efficiency and control costs with a unified, software-defined environment that combines storage, compute, networking and management.

Deliver Outstanding Performance at the Edge

Give remote employees and branch offices the network performance and reliability they need to access vital applications and resources.

Seamlessly Expand into the Cloud

Migrate apps and virtual machines into the public cloud while reducing costs and controlling complexity with VMware Cloud on AWS.

Addressing the need for better remote performance

For many organizations, the pandemic accelerated the move to a distributed or hybrid workforce, with numerous employees working from home at least part of the time. As many remote users found, however, network performance from home was often insufficient for essential enterprise apps, including voice and video apps. Meanwhile, IT teams had difficultly configuring devices and managing remote connectivity.

MetTel’s SD-WAN services, built on VMware SD-WAN, helped address these challenges. SD-WAN services enable organizations to provide remote employees with reliable, high-performance access to a full range of enterprise applications, whether those apps are running in the data center or in a public cloud. At the same time, centralized cloud-based management and automated policy management help streamline operations. 

MetTel recently augmented its SD-WAN services with VMware SASE. With new services based on VMware SASE, MetTel’s clients gain not only the performance, reliability and operational benefits of SD-WAN but also integrated security services and artificial intelligence for operations. 

“Together, VMware and MetTel have been successful in delivering the next generation of WAN services to our customers over the past several years,” says MetTel CTO Ed Fox. “Now we are working together to extend those services to the expanding edge and to individual users wherever they work, providing our largest clients the ability to transform the way they work and engage with their customers.”

Adding global points of presence with hyperconverged infrastructure

To meet growing demand for SD-WAN and SASE services, MetTel needed to scale the data center environments where those services run. For several years, the edge networking services have been running in a private cloud environment built on VMware vSphere and VMware vSAN. These VMware solutions have given MetTel the flexibility of a cloud environment while enabling the company to keep apps on premises for government clients that must meet rigorous data requirements. 

The MetTel team decided to build new environments across the globe to serve new clients and help existing commercial clients better support globally distributed workforces. “By establishing new points of presence that are closer to our clients’ employees, we can reduce the latency and improve the performance that those employees experience,” says Fox.

To create those new global environments, the MetTel team is using VMware HCI, which provides unified, software-defined environments that combine storage, compute, networking and management. HCI helps MetTel reduce management complexity and control costs while preparing the company for a hybrid cloud future. 

With VMware HCI, MetTel expanded from 5 U.S.-based data centers to 19 global data centers. “VMware HCI enabled us to add more points of presence quickly and economically,” says Fox. “We can better support our global clients without adding management complexity.”

Helping ensure availability for clients with VMware Cloud on AWS

When using MetTel’s SD-WAN and SASE services, clients rely on MetTel-provided access circuits for round-the-clock access to their vital apps. To deliver uninterrupted services, MetTel implemented a VMware Cloud on AWS disaster recovery solution. MetTel replicates virtual machines from each of the VMware-based global data centers to AWS. If anything goes wrong with a MetTel data center, the company can fail over to the cloud and continue to provide services to clients.

By using VMware Cloud on AWS as the basis for this disaster recovery solution, the MetTel team operates the same VMware environment on premises and in the cloud. MetTel does not need to rewrite any apps for them to run in the AWS cloud, and operations teams can manage the cloud environment just as they would an on-premises environment. 

“Working with VMware, we have been able to deliver new, better services to global clients while optimizing our own internal operations,” says Fox. “We look forward to continuing our work with VMware and continuing to help our clients connect smarter.”  ▪

2021 Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Managed Network Services
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