For many companies today, the data center is the heart of your business, pumping out vital information that keeps your operation running as smoothly as possible. When your IT department has to constantly fight with inefficient datacenters, it is slowing your company down and giving your competitors a chance to catch up. If you have been coasting along with a sub-par datacenter, and you know that it’s time for a new datacenter build, here are some key points to consider to ensure that your new facility is appropriate for the vital mission that the center plays for your IT department.
First, take a look at your data center’s overall plan—and also your company’s overall needs. One of the most crucial mistakes companies make is to plan a datacenter build project that meets your information needs today, without any thought for the future. If you make this mistake, chances are you will be faced with building another datacenter in the very near future as your IT needs grow. Your plan should have plenty of room for today’s data needs, and also have lots of scalability to introduce new equipment and capacity as it is needed.
Next, think about your location. There may be some instances where you have the capability to house your datacenter within your current building, and there are advantages and drawbacks to this kind of plan, but in most cases you will likely be looking for a location outside your building. The advantage of having it on-site is its ease of use for your IT department; they can troubleshoot, repair, and add on to the center without leaving your office. The downside is that if something happens to your building—a fire, flood, earthquake damage, robbery, or other disaster—your backup data may be destroyed. If your datacenter build plan includes an off-site location, make sure it is still convenient enough that your IT people can get to it in a reasonable amount of time when necessary.
Another important consideration is the security of the facility. You already know that it’s critical to protect your data from cyber threats like hacking, and you have the best firewalls that money can buy, but that will not protect your data if the building is not secure and someone can simply walk in and steal the information. Security features like keycard access, biometric security, and cameras can deter a would-be thief.
When you are designing the interior of your datacenter build project, speed and flexibility are paramount to ensure your IT department and your equipment can do what you expect them to do. This means designing cable systems that are as fast as you can get within your budget. It may seem like a big expense, but again, if you build to support your capacity today, chances are your needs will grow soon in the future and you will be back to square one with an inefficient datacenter, having to add on or even build again (the worst-case scenario).
The mission of your IT department is to provide your company with access to data and information as quickly as possible. The data they provide is crucial to the rest of your employees’ success in being able to perform their jobs well. Without a good datacenter build plan, you are setting your business up for inefficiency, headaches, higher costs, and hassle down the road. Start planning now for your needs today and well into the future.