Larger businesses or corporations often find that their technology requirements have outgrown their existing IT environment, and now require more data center space or a move to a dedicated, wholesale data center.  The decision to move will more than likely involve numerous meetings and consultations, on-site visits, and in-depth analyses and comparisons.  There is a lot of information to be gained and many factors to consider when selecting a data center provider: Redundancy Is Crucial In order to effectively protect your information, your data center must have significant redundancy. Redundancy provides an alternate route for every system to remain operational.  At the bare minimum, there must be primary backup for components such as:

  • Power
  • Fire suppression
  • Cooling systems

In addition to primary backup, look for a data center with secondary backup systems.  Without the backup systems, there is no redundancy.  One example of redundancy in a critical component relates to the air conditioning systems.  Welded and bi-directional piping creates the first level of redundancy.  A water storage facility located on-site is an example of a secondary backup system.  The two backup sources approach the operation of systems from different directions, providing a better guarantee that nothing will fail. Investigate Your Infrastructure You’ll want to have access to a wide variety of networks and carriers.  Whether the data centers are drawing on local or international, private or public, research or other networks, you need to know that you have available.  This gives your customers the ability to access their data wherever and whenever they want to. Carefully Read Through All Service Level Agreements (SLAs) These agreements are used to define a certain quality of service; providers are held accountable for their ability to maintain these specific service levels.  SLAs typically cover details such as power service, network uptime, and the stability of the temperature.  These agreements are often part of the contract, so make sure that they meet your expectations prior to making your final selection. Safety & Security Must Be Top Priorities There are several steps that data center providers can take in order to provide the best security for their customers.  This level of quality means that there will be no gaps in the security during bad weather, changes of staff, and power outages.  Some of the most common technology used in data center security includes:

  • Digital video surveillance
  • Mantraps
  • Fingerprint recognition and retinal scans
  • Electronic access control

Of course, an integral part of the security of the data centers will be determined during the initial planning stages of the data center construction.  Factors such as the frequency of natural disasters or the potential risks associated with a large local population can make security more or less difficult. Finally, make sure that the data centers you visit have the scalable space and flexible solutions to handle any growth in your business.