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Research report

Powering reinvention with private wireless networks

5-minute read

In brief

  • Total enterprise reinvention relies on a strong digital core—with connectivity as a critical component.
  • Private wireless networks are opening up new ways of bringing next-level connectivity to challenging industrial sites.
  • Using Long Term Evolution (LTE) or 5G technologies, companies can transform network flexibility, security, scalability and performance.
  • Our report explores the key steps to take-including shaping the strategy, accelerating the value, and planning future network optimization.

Connectivity is the enabler of industry reinvention

The business climate continues to generate new and unexpected challenges for all industries.

Industrial companies need to change faster – and on a greater scale – than ever before. To keep up, they need to embrace Total Enterprise Reinvention by harnessing the power of next-level capabilities like robotics, digital twins, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

Leaders know this rests on having fast, resilient, reliable, secure and predictable connectivity that can adapt with the needs of the business. It’s why modern operational technology (OT) networks are the key enabler of Industry 4.0.

Industry needs more from its networks

There’s a catch. Industrial sites and facilities are very different to typical offices and business premises. And so are their networking requirements.

Why? Because connectivity in these locations is often challenged by their physical scale, remote location, and/or construction materials. This is exacerbated by cumbersome legacy technology that was built many years ago and is increasingly expensive to maintain.

The result? “Shadow IT” often arises, reducing central oversight and control. And companies often end up with a costly and underperforming “cocktail of connectivity” across both IT and OT, comprising thousands of gateways, routers and endpoint devices from a wide range of different providers.

Private wireless networks creates new possibilities

A new kind of solution is now possible. Advances in private wireless networks provide new ways for industrial companies to upgrade, extend and modernize their connectivity. Powered by the same cellular technology used by public carriers, these networks unlock new digital innovation across the Cloud Continuum, while providing a new fabric for reliable IT and OT service delivery.

  • Accessible and open: Flexible, always-on networks provide reliable coverage and an “anywhere and everywhere” approach to digital consumption across industrial sites.

  • Secure and trusted: Enhanced security across IT and OT, with important business data authorized, encrypted and wrapped in zero-trust security protocols.

  • Scalable: A change-ready, automated, and highly adaptable platform able to scale in place, support innovation, and grow with business needs.

  • High performing: High availability and low latency suitable for mission-critical industrial applications, with the ability to monitor and prioritize traffic.

      Towards a private wireless future

      By developing an end-to-end vision, industrial companies can drive a successful network transformation across both IT and OT.

      The priorities? To understand the current landscape and map the technology to fit the vision. To align the network with business needs and deliver value end-to-end. And to plan how to integrate the private wireless ecosystem across the technology stack—including hardware, software, and physical infrastructure.

      Industry OT and Edge Networks
      Industry OT and Edge Networks

      To do this well, companies need to orchestrate an ecosystem that includes global telcos, cloud and edge platform providers, IoT specialists, device and application vendors, system integrators, operations outsourcers and strategy and transformation advisory experts.

      The key point? Collaborating with the ecosystem helps ensure fast, efficient, and successful results by using best-in-class skills to solve complex business problems.

      Private wireless networks allow industrial companies to reliably upgrade and extend their connectivity, while unlocking new digital innovations across the Cloud Continuum.

      Time to get started

      The best way to begin? Accenture recommends addressing several key considerations up front:

      • Shape the strategy: Define the vision, use cases, devices, spectrum and security needs to deliver maximum value to the business. Use accelerator tools like Accenture’s patent-pending Private Wireless Accelerator to tie the vision to outcomes that drive real, measurable value.

      • Accelerate the value: Set up a global delivery management capability, including a value realization office, procurement, planning and control. Consider a factory approach to execution—prepare, deploy, test, cutover, operate—to deliver fast, cost effective and low-risk network evolution for the business.

      • Run and optimize: Plan how to run the private wireless network in the most efficient and effective way to maximize the value. Optimize and harmonize private wireless networks, edge and cloud operations with a mix of upskilled employees, external expertise, and AI-powered automation.

      Plan for a private wireless future

      Today’s industrial companies need a strong digital core to power total enterprise reinvention.

      Networks are a critical component of that core, allowing companies to take advantage of the Cloud Continuum, helping them operate faster and smarter, leveraging next-generation AI and ML automation.

      It’s why this is the time to plan for a private wireless future for mission-critical OT networks.

      View the summary


      Jefferson Wang

      Senior Managing Director – Global Technology Convergence Lead

      Kevin Kapich

      Principal Director – Critical Networks Lead, 5G and Networks Practice