Author: John Marinucci

Thanks to remote work, Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) has rapidly grown in popularity since 2023. As the technology evolves, we’re taking a look at recent SASE market trends.  

SASE delivers consistent and secure network policy across all access types making it a must-have for remote work.  
What makes SASE different from other network solutions is that it combines network functions — like SD-WAN — with network security into a unified platform. This leads to improved security and support for a remote workforce. 
While SASE rose to popularity in 2020 as a response to the pandemic and an increased need for a remote workforce, companies are now actively thinking about how to evolve their technology suite.  

With that in mind, here’s what you need to know about SASE market trends for 2023 and beyond.  

SASE Interest is Growing Due to Successful Early Adoption 

The last few years have accelerated the innovation of SASE and with promising results.  Not all SASE is created equal, and it’s essential to understand the native architecture, integration and administrative tools.   

In fact, the term SASE has already been bifurcated into premise/hardware type deployments versus cloud native. Each has its merits depending requirements of the client. 

A survey of 200 IT leaders at large corporations (at least $250 million in revenue and an average of $2.4 billion) conducted by Comcast Business Masergy, Fortinet and CIO found 94% of IT leaders polled said that they’re looking for SASE to make remote work sustainable for the long term. 

Almost half (48%) of respondents said they’ve already adopted SASE or are actively transitioning to SASE, while 36% had plans to adopt and 16% were investigating their options.  

The benefits of SASE, including improved security, support for remote workforces and increased network agility, are exceeding expectations. For those that have implemented SASE, 59% of respondents said that it has benefited their remote work connectivity, while only 38% expected it to do so.    

For heavily service-chained or integrated platforms, cloud-native SASE also represents  substantial total cost of ownership (TCO) gains and reduced administrative effort, with greater control and visibility. 

Plus, security improvements have also been impressive, with 69% of respondents saying that SASE has increased their security consistency, compliance, and local security enforcement.  

Architectures have also evolved to speed the delivery of advanced security functions into simple enablement through software rather than integrated hardware. This enables organizations to deliver protection in minutes versus weeks or even months. 

With these major wins, it’s no wonder more IT leaders are turning to SASE to improve network connectivity and security.  

SASE (Secure Access Service Edge) Market Trends: What You Need to Know Right Now

With No Sign of Cyber Attacks Slowing Down, SASE Becomes Critical for Remote Work 

Cyberattacks are continuing to increase in frequency and complexity. Remote work drastically increases the threat surface, making security a central concern.  

The appeal of SASE is that it’s an integrated platform for both network and security. In fact, 98% of IT leaders polled in the CIO study said that having security and network in one place was very important, if not critical.  

Security is core to SASE, and 72% of respondents said that they measure the success of their SASE initiatives based on improved security and compliance.   

An emphasis on comprehensive and evolving security tools is one of the most important SASE market trends and we expect this to continue as the market evolves.  

SASE Market Trends That Will Continue: Tech Consolidation and AI  

With rising inflation and market volatility, companies are looking to cut costs where possible in order to ride out the storm. 

In the CIO study, 95% of IT leaders said that they wanted their SASE tools on a common platform, indicating that the vast majority of them are looking to reduce complexity and spend.

This kind of “all-in-one” approach to SASE can only happen with partnerships between SD-WAN network service providers and security providers that can integrate all of the security components.  

Most SASE solutions reduce complexity as network and security is in one platform. Plus, nearly half (45%) of respondents said that switching to SASE saved money.  

In addition to cutting costs through consolidation, 91% of IT leaders said they want their SASE solutions to have AI capabilities. AI enables IT leaders to quickly analyze data that network and security tools generate, which can lead to greater efficiency.  

Relying on Managed Service Providers  

In an effort to cut costs, many companies are downsizing their IT teams, or at least not actively growing their teams. While organizations may be tightening full-time staff, there’s still a very real need for security experts to implement and manage SASE initiatives.  

In the CIO Study, IT leaders shared a number of challenges with SASE:  

  • Implementing and integrating the solution (41%).   
  • Providing IT expertise, best practices and training (40%).  
  • Eliminating system fragmentation, consolidating tools and avoiding silos (40%). 

As a result, many IT leaders are looking for external consultants or managed service providers.  

63% of those surveyed say they plan on using a managed service provider for SASE development, and 75% say they’ll use managed service providers for some, if not all, their ongoing SASE management.  

With managed services becoming more utilized across the board, it’s clear that relying on managed service providers will continue to be one of the leading SASE market trends.  

Choosing a Managed Service Provider for SASE   

IT Leaders are relying on SASE to provide consistent network connectivity with comprehensive security solutions. The right SASE Managed Service Provider can assess the unique connectivity and security needs of the organization and provide solutions that adapt with business needs.  

Bridgepointe can help your IT team determine the right SASE solution for your business.  

Talk to an expert to learn more.