There’s no question that co-location is all the rage. As budgets shrink and more and more services move to the cloud, many organizations are considering moving their data centers to co-location facilities.
Deciding whether to move off-site or to retrofit your existing data center has far-reaching implications in the short and long term. Either option represents a major technology transition and should be handled with care.
The first step is to do a cost-benefits analysis to determine the best solution for your data center. Make sure you evaluate these key costs:
Moving to a co-location facility may help you reduce or eliminate capital expenditures associated with data center consolidation or expansion, but this isn’t true in every case! Be sure to develop sound budget numbers and compare them to the upfront contract costs required by your co-location provider.
Don’t over-estimate the operating expenses in your existing facility. Operating expenses at co-location facilities are usually much higher than what you’re paying now. Consult an expert to help you determine your actual operating expenses.
Make sure to compare costs per square foot. The rent at co-location facilities is often dramatically higher than commercial office space. If you’re bursting at the seams and hoping to recover some office space by moving your data center, it might make sense to talk to your landlord about expanding your footprint at your current location.
Migration costs will add up whether you’re moving across town or down the hall. Be sure to evaluate the migration costs for each type of move and factor them into your analysis.
Risk of Downtime
Of course, there’s increased risk of downtime associated with moving to a co-location facility versus keeping your IT assets in place. Again, planning is key. Any significant technology transition will require the assistance of a skilled data center services provider to ensure that key infrastructure is in place and ready to go at the right time.
Making an Informed Decision
Moving to a co-location facility is a great option for many, but not all, organizations. Consult with an expert to help you determine the actual short and long-term costs before pulling the trigger.