Since we introduced Citrix SD-WAN 10.2 at the beginning of the year, adhering to Microsoft’s Office 365 Network Connectivity Principles has been as easy as the click of a mouse button, and users at hundreds of branch offices around the world are now benefiting. As I previously highlighted, following Microsoft’s guidance is critical to ensuring a great user experience with Office 365 apps. Failure to do so is likely to result in problems like slow Outlook searches, long file upload and download times, and poor-quality Teams audio/video.

Citrix SD-WAN Qualification Under the Office 365 Networking Partner Program

If you do a Google or Bing search for SD-WAN and the “Works with Office 365” designation that identifies solutions verified by Microsoft as conforming to their connectivity principles, here’s what you’ll see (after scrolling past the ads):

Yes, so far, the only Microsoft-qualified solution that I see is Citrix SD-WAN. As a long-time and close partner of Microsoft, we have been quick to collaborate with them on Office 365 delivery in multiple ways. A great example is the ability of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops to optimize Microsoft Teams audio, video and screen sharing traffic by redirecting it to the user device. This builds on the highly successful HDX RealTime Optimization Pack for Skype for Business, which has been adopted by Microsoft customers globally. And virtualized Teams is even better with Citrix SD-WAN.

Even before Citrix SD-WAN went through the formal Microsoft validation process and obtained “Works with Office 365” status, it was already optimizing the delivery of Office 365 apps, whether virtualized or not. Qualification under the Office 365 Networking Partner Program provides further assurance that the Citrix solution follows Microsoft’s Office 365 networking requirements, recommendations, and best practices. With Citrix SD-WAN, Microsoft customers can easily migrate from legacy hub-and-spoke, data center-focused network and security architectures to a modern design that gives end users a great experience with the apps they use every day. Couple that with Azure integration and you can really take Office 365 to the next level.

Does It Really Work? Case in Point: Malux

Malux is a supplier of lighting, communications, and electrical equipment that employs people around the world. “We don’t really care where our staff are; they can just connect and do their work,” Malux CEO Anders Nygren says. Even at 40 milliseconds of latency — much less than what many legacy network architectures achieve — Office 365 users at Malux were complaining about a sluggish user experience.

As highlighted in their success story, Citrix SD-WAN has provided “significant user experience benefits,” reducing latency by 80 percent. And Nygren proudlly shares that, “With Citrix SD-WAN for Microsoft Office 365, we can create a new office anywhere in hours, not weeks or months,” improving business agility and scalability.

This month, with the Citrix SD-WAN 11.0 release, we’ve taken another valuable step forward by simplifying configuration for Office 365 customers who use a proxy server. Find out more about Citrix SD-WAN for Office 365 in our solution brief, and start your free 90-day trial now!

If you’re at Microsoft Inspire in Las Vegas this week, stop by booth #1726 to see Citrix SD-WAN and Microsoft solutions in action.