Colocation data centres are managed facilities that allow organisations to lease space, often within a dedicated rack or cabinet, or within separate or defined cages. The main difference between outsourcing space from a wholesale data centre model and colocation is that in wholesale models, tenants lease entire fully-built data centre spaces, while in colocation, clients hire smaller spaces with cooling, security, power, connectivity and engineering services that suit their specific needs.

Is there a problem keeping my kit on-site?

There’s no issue keeping a kit on-site or in a dedicated data facility. However, as organisations demand more computer power, flexible capacity, and resilient connectivity, providing them with the right data centre environment can be complicated, which, ultimately translates to increased costs. Building an in-house data centre and ensuring it operates efficiently can be quite resource-heavy, especially when it comes to IT and capital expenditure. Furthermore, in-house data centres make unnecessary noise and use up vital office space.

Why Should I Change My Existing Arrangement and Go for a Colocation Facility?

As an organisation, there will come a time when it’s no longer justifiable to invest in the effort and risk required to build and maintain an on-site data centre. The idea to outsource data management is often triggered by change – usually after reviewing the existing IT delivery model or due to something not linked to IT like an acquisition or merger, a reallocation of costs, growth that’s putting pressure on office space, or an office move.

Are the Services Most Colocation Providers Offer the Same?

Even though a majority of the services colocation providers offer may seem to deliver the same things – connectivity, cooling, resilience and security – a closer look under the hood will reveal that there are some significant differences between them. As such, what each provider claims, and what they offer is different. Therefore, taking the time to consider the options various providers have to offer can mean a world of difference to you, the client.

What Are Some of the Things I Need to Consider When Choosing a Colocation Service?

  • Resilience – Consider the level of resilience your organisation requires. What level is incorporated in the data centre’s processes, structure, and design?
  • Location – Is the data centre easily accessible to you but hard for intruders to access?
  • Security – How secure is the data centre, the provider’s operational diligence, and access controls.
  • Connectivity – Does the data centre have a variety of cloud and connectivity solutions? A range of options allows you to choose the best mix of solutions for cost and resilience.
  • Power – How energy efficient is the centre? Data centres consume a lot of energy, something that is of concern both in running costs and environmentally.
  • Services – Does the centre provide reliable support services? When, and if something goes wrong, is there somebody you can contact?
  • Some colocation services providers operate like property companies, with their revenue being based on leased space.
  • Others manage dark sites where off-peak hours’ will cost you an arm and a leg while others, like Datum, offer fully-serviced solutions where customer satisfaction is of the utmost importance to our success.

Flexibility and Business Growth

Does the service provider trick you into signing fixed contracts based on space? Or do they allow you to be more flexible and grow according to your power usage? Does the centre provide access to a supportive ecosystem of professional service providers, available when needed via direct connections, so you have the support you need when you need it for growth, transition, and operation?

Accreditation and Site Visits

Do not take a provider’s word for what they claim to do. Instead, take time to investigate their third party accreditation, visit their site and to find out how they operate and how they maintain the security and resilience of the centre.

Colocation centres have the potential to provide what you need when setting up a hybrid IT system that supports your business at an affordable cost. You could also consider UPS batteries UK for support.The key to your success lies in how well you can build a lasting relationship with a colocation services provider that’ll support your organisation both now and in the future.