Data Center Modernization vs. CoLocation - Evaluation Best Practices

A Guide to Help Leaders Make Effective Data Center Decisions

Information technology leaders today must continuously evaluate how to deliver services to their users with speed and reliability. The complexity in that service delivery model has grown exponentially and continues to evolve rapidly with the development of the Internet of Things (IoT). At the core of service delivery for any information technology (IT) department is their data center; the investments made in the hardware, software, physical infrastructure, security, location, and ongoing operational policies in their data center all have a significant impact on the quality and responsiveness of service delivery to their users.

Thoughtful placement of computing workloads is a critical strategy to enabling responsive service delivery to users (as discussed in LEDG Guide on computing demands) and many organizations have adopted public cloud as a component of their portfolio. While early public cloud predictions prophesized the demise of the on-premise data center, both industry experts and owners now agree that a hybrid strategy that balances cloud and on-premise infrastructure is critical for success in today’s environment.

Because of the pace and scale that IT teams work at today, decisions surrounding their data center can be difficult, especially in regard to retaining data center infrastructure on-premise vs. outsourcing to a colocation facility. Successful evaluation of these two options considers:

  • An organization’s technology profile
  • Modernization costs to upgrade the existing on-premise data center and the associated savings/ benefits
  • Colocation cost, including rental, remote hands, connectivity, migration cost, and more
  • Latency for application and service delivery to users
  • Uptime and reliability

This guide intends to help information technology leaders understand the factors to consider when evaluating the modernization of on-premise data centers as compared to outsourcing to a colocation facility. Both options have the potential to offer significant benefits when planned, designed, and executed correctly. An organization’s successful decision process should include a complete analysis on how to properly evaluate the benefits and risks of both options.

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