Cyxtera Blog: Data Centers

Written by Chip Freund on June 15, 2018

The importance of Data Center Planning

M&O blog series: planning


In this M&O blog series, I’ve discussed the importance of improving data centers and data center staffing. In today’s blog I look at planning.  

You might have heard the phrase “proper planning and preparation prevents poor performance.” That’s certainly true in the data center world. Whether it’s planning for fiscal issues or preparing both standard and emergency operating procedures, data center operations teams should ensure they are ready for any issues that may affect their facility’s performance. Those personnel who neglect to involve detailed planning in their data center strategy may expose their customers to costly outages and other system vulnerabilities.  

At Cyxtera, one of the most important things we do to help maintain the uptime in our data centers is properly maintain our equipment. To manage the maintenance of all critical data center systems Cyxtera follows a well-orchestrated plan.  The plan defines when the maintenance will take place, who will take the component offline and perform the work, how long the maintenance will take, and what testing is required prior to putting the unit back online.  This process assures not only that our data centersare constructed with concurrent maintainability, but that each component is operating within normal parameters. We don’t just deal with equipment if it breaks down and causes problems in the data center.  

It’s also very important that we maintain accurate, up-to-date records of our documents and policies across our entire portfolio of data centers. Our customers need to know that any of their data held in a remote data center adheres to the same requirements of a local data center, especially as more companies look to diversify their IT Infrastructure.  

Management and Operations (M&O) Stamp of Approvalis designed to make sure that data center teams have a robust planning process along with a strategy for what to do with results of maintenance. It’s assurance for colocation customers like ours that best practices are in place to keep the data center in which their IT infrastructure is contained running smoothly with utmost reliability. Data center service providers that don’t utilize regular planning and maintenance aren’t able to provide their customers with the same level of assurance.   

As a professional working in the data center industry, I’ve heard of cases when maintenance on a facility was neither planned nor performed after it was built, so it couldn’t be taken offline without affecting customers. By the time an issue was addressed, customers lost not only time but also money.   

Performing planning and rigorous maintenance exercises allows us to keep our critical infrastructure running at peak performance and it demonstrates the resilience of our data centers as we take equipment offline without affecting customers. The M&O Stamp of Approval process validates our methods and procedures around maintenance and all other key data center operations.  

For a list of our some critical principles for selecting the right data center service provider, view our white papers “Seven Important Considerations When Choosing a Colocation Provider.