In the not-too-distant past, edge computing was considered a futuristic concept with no tangible enterprise benefits. Times have changed, however, and industries ranging from manufacturing to law enforcement to retail and everything in between are availing themselves of intelligence at the edge. And with new connected innovations continually emerging, we can only expect the demand for and benefits of edge computing to increase.

In order to remain competitive and technologically relevant, it’s important that IT execs develop a long-term, strategic plan for the edge. With that in mind, today’s post covers a compilation of pivotal considerations for building your business case for the edge.

Edge Computing Is a Necessary Architectural Shift

First, there was on-premise, then there was the cloud. Now, we have the edge, which essentially bridges the gap between on-premise and cloud-delivered applications. When apps and services are deployed at one or more metro edge locations, companies can combine the low-latency network benefits of on-premise deployments with the managed infrastructure benefits offered by public cloud providers. In the future, expect to see a single application deployed at all three locations, with the network intelligently routing users to the right service location to optimize performance, security, and cost.

Determine Which Pain Points Can Be Solved Today

As with any business case, when outlining your plan for edge computing, it’s important to identify where it could address your current business pain points. For example, could network performance problems be mitigated via analytics and processing on remote devices?

Calculate the Value of Edge Computing

It’s also important to consider the long-term value of edge computing and how a flexible edge architecture could reduce, or in some cases eliminate, typical IT spend. A recent InformationWeek opinion piece points to the remote work scramble stemming from the pandemic, examining how many cases required major network modifications and upgrades to ensure performance and business continuity. Had these companies already invested in an edge architecture, they could have avoided many of these challenges and expenses.

A Framework for More Flexibility and Scalability

With a dynamic edge comes greater flexibility and scalability from a compute, operational, and flexible deployment perspective. By deploying network functions closer to applications and users, companies can achieve performance efficiencies and lay the framework for ongoing enhancements.

For more on the numerous benefits of edge computing and other considerations to be mindful of as you build a business case, check out some of our previous posts on the technology here.