More datacentres are being built to serve companies that do not want to waste time and money building their own. It is my view that many firms can make better use of someone else's. This is about the increasing rarity of certain skills, combined with increasing business requirements and a need to reduce the cost of infrastructure.
Virtualisation technology alongside everything-as-a-service is sparking new interest for standardised datacentre services.
Furthermore, with businesses set to increasingly adopt private cloud offerings over the next five years, datacentre outsourcing will only increase – especially as firms find themselves with greater volumes of data to manage.
Even if IT is core to a customer business, setting up its own datacentre is costly. Apart from the high capital costs, there are the high day-to-day costs of running a datacentre. Routinely adding new services or upgrading to the latest technology is just not feasible.
In this scenario, co-location makes sense. Part of the server network is kept on site and another part is maintained at a separate physical location by the chosen service provider. This can also be advantageous in transitional periods, such as during a merger or acquisition.
However, it is not just about hosting servers, but building capabilities to provide multi-channel connectivity, incorporating multi-level security. Processes are needed that eliminate security concerns and check security at both the physical and network level.
Large international firms may also prefer to have one central location for company servers. Remote users can link to the server through a secure network, often with access to live telephone support in all time zones.
This also allows for more frequent updates to applications and faster operating speeds, which can greatly enhance a company’s ability to conduct business.
Trust is critical, but in my opinion service providers are as concerned as their customers about the health of the resources they look after. This is because taking care of their customers’ IT infrastructure is their primary business.
Ferenc Szelenyi is vice president of EMEA public sector services at Dell Services
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