By the end of 2017, worldwide data storage capacities will be at their highest and only set to increase. We know of companies working with “big data” and shifting from stand-alone personal computers to higher powered computing systems like “the cloud”. With the internet, E-mail and social media, access to online data and instant data transfers are inseparable from our daily lives. The importance of data reaches far beyond personal usage, and an increasing number of companies and jobs now depend purely on the internet and data processing and analysis. As a result, companies began to develop their own data centers. But as the volumes of data constantly increased, they needed to hire third-party data center providers to meet their requirements, creating an entire industry in itself. Setting up a data center, like any other facility, comes with a host of its own challenges and considerations.
Here are some things to consider when trying to find the right location for data centers:
Flexibility and Scalability
Apart from the servers, there are a number of other infrastructural considerations to address when looking for a commercial space to set up a data center. In the business of ‘data’, it is important to ensure that the commercial space has the possibility of expansion. As businesses grow, their back-end data management systems grow with them. Whether it is an in-house data center or an outsourced one, it is advisable to partner with a commercial real estate services provider who can help you grow.
Networking and Power Supply
For any data center, a robust networking system is paramount. Some research regarding the best internet providers able to supply greater bandwidths and faster speeds around your commercial office location can also go a long way, as the crux of the business will depend on the reliability of the two combined. Apart from the network ecosystem, data centers consume huge amounts of electricity and count on a continuous power supply. It’s essential to evaluate the power supply of the area and the rates, alongside setting up efficient cooling systems, establishing connections to multiple power grids and employing instantaneous backup generators or large batteries.
Capital and Security
The initial capital investment required to set up a data center is large and accompanied by hefty operational expenses. That leaves most businesses without the resources to provide adequate security for a data center that will house its mission critical infrastructure. Some of the bare minimum safety requirements include layered security, controlled access to authorized personnel, CCTV and monitoring systems, physical barriers surrounding the data centers and anti-virus software. It is essential to diligently check that the organization’s valuable IT assets are always under secure protection.
Also, setting up a data center is a capital-intensive investment; hence it is advisable to have them built on purchased land, and not on leased premises. While the initial cost might pinch a bit, it is worth it, in the long run, not to be paying ever-increasing rents.
For a data center to be successfully run, it needs to be manned on a 24/7 basis. Specialized staff needs to be hired and the commercial space needs to be conveniently located for them. Apart from the employees, ease of access is also important from a resource, package delivery, and maintenance stand point. If the commercial building being considered for a data center can fulfill these criteria, it is automatically a prime prospective. Finding the right office space is a critical task and one that a commercial real estate partner like Citadel can provide invaluable insight for.
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