ICM Research conducted the independent annual survey on behalf of virtual network operator Vanco. It found that 32% of European IT executives spend one or more days a week managing their Wan. Researchers questioned 321 senior IT executives worldwide.
Allen Timpany, chief executive of Vanco, laid the blame at the door of the large telecoms carriers. He said, "I do not think the big carriers do nearly a good enough job to provide a usable end-to-end system for ordinary service providers."
Of the IT executives surveyed, 48% said the inability to quickly identify network faults was influencing the effectiveness of their networks.
The same number said the inability to quickly restore full network service after a discontinuity was also a problematic issue.
Over the next two years, 60% of IT executives said their highest priority was to cut network costs. In 2004, the same study found that 47% of IT executives gave cost reduction as their main priority.
Network security was the second priority (35%, compared with 32% in 2004), but the need for more bandwidth has grown in importance. In 2004, increased bandwidth was the fifth priority for IT executives (15%), whereas it has now risen to 37% of respondents, who considered it a priority for the next two years. Timpany said more bandwidth is required to drive more sophisticated applications.
To reduce costs Timpany urged users to change networking technologies. "When you design networks, if you have a specific type of technology and negotiate harder, you can lower costs by a maximum of 10% to 15%. If you change technologies you can cut the cost by 50%.
"The most important thing is to get high-quality independent advice on the design options available. If you design it around an asset-based carrier's product range, the chief information officer will never know what else is available."