To mark our ten-year anniversary, we have pulled together some key things that our core team has learned from Datum’s first decade. Thanks to Dominic Phillips, Ian Mace, Matt McCluney and Will Sargent for the imparting their wisdom…
#1 It’s amazing how much a small and focused company can achieve compared to a large and unwieldy one
We might not be the biggest data centre, but our offering and reputation is acknowledged across the industry and by peers. We can go toe to toe with the big players and demonstrate to top-level organisations that we are the best solution on the market. Our smaller size gives us more agility and flexibility compared to large-scale providers and, as a relatively new player in the colo market, we have had the freedom to explore new ideas and develop innovative solutions without being constrained by ingrained corporate procedures.
#2 It’s not about winning contracts at any cost
Sometimes, if the price point won’t allow us to deliver the quality of service we benchmark ourselves against, we have to accept that we should walk away from the deal for the good of the business (and indeed the market).
#3 Colocation is a service – not a property play
Flexibility, both operational and commercial, is key to delivering a tailored solution to our enterprise clients. All clients have different technical demands and being able to adapt our service and solution to meet those demands is key to us winning some of our larger deals. Our service management can be a life saver for enterprise clients engaged in complex digital transformation processes, and for service providers who are onboarding multiple clients simultaneously.
#4 A client-facing engineering team is more than a ‘nice to have’
By not keeping our engineering team hidden away in the depths of the engine room, we ensure quick responses to client requests and a simple ‘one stop’ engagement process between our clients and our engineers. Many of our peers channel communications through account managers or outsource remote hands services. In contrast, we prefer a more open and collaborative approach.
#5 To offer a truly excellent service, the right hand must know what the left hand is doing
In larger organisations, roles and responsibilities are often very defined. Our relatively small team means that we all work exceptionally closely with each other, and we all have a good understanding of what everybody else is doing. This benefits our clients and partners, who can pick up the phone directly to anyone in our organisation and receive a helpful response
#6 The importance of location shouldn’t be underestimated
Our situation on the high security Cody Technology Park is attractive for clients who are particularly security sensitive, and our Farnborough location is ideal for clients who want low latency to the City but appreciate ease of access.
#7 Transparency and openness are key
For us this means listening to our clients’ requirements, acting on feedback and ensuring that we always do what we commit to doing. There is nothing to be gained from being anything but 100% honest and open with clients if we are to manage, meet (or, ideally, exceed) expectations.
#8 Work to your strengths
By outsourcing the management of the underlying data centre infrastructure (M&E) to a high-quality provider rather than doing it in house through a ‘mixed’ responsibility engineering team, we ensure focus and first-rate operations. After all, if our engineers are faced M&E issues at the same time as a client needs assistance, which should they focus on first?
#9 Our partner ecosystem adds value
To augment our colocation solution, we work with selected partners to provide additional services for our clients. By combining our colo with the services provided by our partner ecosystem, we can present a market-ready, end-to-end digital transformation solution and mitigate the need for our clients to source and manage diverse suppliers and service.
#10 A bacon sandwich is by far the best motivational tool (according to our data centre manager)
We’re pleased to have come so far over the first ten years of our story and have enjoyed developing our proposition with our clients and partners. No doubt, the next ten years will see significant changes, but the essence of our colo provision will remain unchanged. To join us for our second decade, please get in touch or arrange a tour of our facility.