16th April 2021

Why moving to colo may be the best IT decision you ever make

Signage outside Datum Datacentres in Farnborough

IT is a major business overhead these days and expenditure is growing rapidly. According to research by Gartner, Inc., worldwide IT spend is projected to total $3.8 trillion in 2021, an increase of 4% from 2020. This growth will no doubt be driven in part by the experiences of the past year, which have shown clearly that IT is a prerequisite for business survival. It’s likely that this will have changed perspectives on IT spend – what was once ‘nice to have’ will now be viewed as essential. And as budgets are stretched, and many businesses are focusing on building themselves back up again after the troubles of the past year, it’s easy to see why businesses are looking at ways they can trim their spending whilst still being progressive.

As organisations opt for ever more complex hybrid IT models, the demands on IT infrastructure increase. So too does the demand for increased security, faster connectivity, greater reliability and higher-powered computing, all of which can be fulfilled by colocation.

And whilst we should add the proviso that decisions about business-critical IT should not be driven purely by financial considerations, adopting colo does have the added benefit of helping to control costs. And here’s how…

1. Free up costly real estate by migrating IT infrastructure off-premise

It’s not only IT spend that is increasing – so too is the cost of property rental or ownership, especially in high price areas such as London. Historically, some organisations have been cautious about moving their data off-premise for security or compliance reasons, or because they find the migration too daunting. But most now realise that the right off-premise solution by far exceeds on-site storage in terms of security, resilience and scalability, and that partnering with the right datacentre provider means benefiting from expertise and experience, which makes the migration relatively stress free.

2. Expert advice means increased efficiency

Providing you pick a partner for your off-premise IT that emphasises service, migrating to colocation should also mean benefitting from the help of an expert who can help you optimise your setup and manage it more efficiently. Getting advice and guidance on designing the best deployment strategy (including a review of technical design to identify any improvements that could save time and money) and receiving regular service reports and reviews throughout your contract, means that you know your IT estate is being monitored and managed. This frees you up to focus on big-picture IT development instead.

3. Consolidate costs through colocation

One of the other great benefits of colocation is that you can consolidate and reduce all your basic running costs. Your colocation partner will be providing the cooling, power, bandwidth and physical security for your servers, so it’s a great chance to benefit from their economies of scale and reduced rates. It’s also very convenient to have one bill for all data housing requirements, which saves you the time and money associated with managing multiple suppliers.

4. Move from CapEx to OpEx expenditure

Building or maintaining your own data centre is an expensive capital expense that many organisations can no longer afford or justify. Colocation enables you to avoid this expense and lower your overheads by moving from a CapEx to an OpEx model. The result is that you can allocate long-term IT running costs much more predictably and efficiently and scale infrastructure more easily.

5. Colocation as part of a cloud strategy

Right now, many businesses are moving areas of their infrastructure to the cloud as part of their wider strategy. According to a global survey undertaken by Deloitte in April 2020, the proportion of workloads done on-premise will fall to 35% in 2021 from 59% in 2019. Forbes Technology Council puts the growth of cloud in a large part down to the pandemic:

Because of the uncertainty of the times and the likely realities of the "new normal," more and more organizations are now charting the course for their journeys toward cloud computing and digital transformation.

Most businesses are adopting increasingly hybrid strategies when it comes to cloud because different applications demand different solutions. Colocation is a great way to enable this and achieve the cost savings and performance you need. At Datum, for example, we can support your hybrid requirements with direct connects between your kit and private and public cloud platforms. These avoid potential internet issues of speed, reliability and security.

There are many reasons why businesses are turning to colocation - recovering from the events of the past year, futureproofing IT and allowing for growth and development whilst keeping a tight rein on costs, are key issues being faced by IT departments now. As we come out of the lockdown fug, now is an ideal time to consider the best options for IT infrastructure and workloads.

If you would like to find out more, contact us today.

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