18th January 2017
Seeing is believing: What a data centre tour can uncover
More and more organisations are moving to co-location providers to help deal with greater demand on their IT infrastructures. A great co-location provider can support all your goals – at a pricing level and at a service level that meets your needs. They can also provide you with a flexible contract, security at multiple levels and ongoing planned and preventative maintenance; but most importantly they can provide you with a strong and service-based approach to the relationship.
But not all co-location data centres are the same. Without seeing a data centre for yourself, it’s hard to tell which providers will really live up to their promises. That’s why a tour of the facility is valuable to help you uncover the reality of the service provision.
If you are considering investing time and money entrusting your business critical IT to a service provider, a visit to the facility is a crucial part of your fact-finding and is vital before committing to anything.
The typical areas that are considered are the levels of service provided, security processes, care within the data centre, and levels of tidiness and organisation. It’s only possible to get the true grasp of these with a visit to the facility.
Here are five reasons why taking a tour should be your priority:
- First-hand experience: During a tour you’ll get to see the location and setting of the data centre for yourself, as well as any other factors you might want to consider. For example, at Datum, you’ll see how government grade security operates across the facility at multiple points as well as the level of surveillance.
- Security protocols: From entering the facility to leaving it, you’ll encounter the rules and regulations that your prospective provider adheres to. When it’s potentially your data inside the walls of the facility, the right grade of security that meets your business needs and protects your business is paramount.
- A feel for the culture: The actual culture and ethos of the provider is essential. A top tier co-location provider will go beyond simply ticking boxes, they will be more than happy to show you accreditations, a code of conduct and introduce you to staff at all levels. The culture will give you the best impression of how the facility is maintained and the likely service levels you’ll receive.
- A real snapshot: You can see images of the data centre online, but images aren’t always reality. Standing in on the data centre floor and taking a good look around will give you a deeper view on the details such as power, cabling and cooling.
- An introduction: Perhaps most importantly of all, meet the staff. These are the people that will protect and at times support your infrastructure, so meeting them in person will enable you to assess their capability and develop a relationship with them.
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