Avoiding data centre capital project failures
Matt Stansberry, director of Content & Publications, Uptime Institute, discusses the intricacies of investing in data centres.
For enterprise IT organisations embarking on a data centre capital project - the stakes are undeniably high. Building a new data centre is a massive investment, but also enables or hampers an organisation's IT strategy and capability - affecting an organisation's business performance for years to come.
As more organisations rely on colocation data centre providers, ensuring the design and construction of these projects meets your requirements is critical as well.
With multiple vendors, subcontractors, and typically more than 50 different disciplines involved in any data centre project - structural, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, fuel pumps, networking, and more - it would be remarkable if there are no errors introduced or corner cut during the construction process.
Lapses in construction oversight, planning, and budget can mean that an expensive new data centre facility will fail to meet the owner's requirements, with the end result offering poor performance, limited flexibility, insufficient compute resources, or excess stranded capacity.
Addressing problems as they reveal themselves may delay construction and delay the start of operations and usually requires significant spending. In some cases, the problems continue to hamper operations for the life of the data centre and may eventually require the facility to be replaced prematurely.
Even if the facility should continue operations for its expected life, it may cost more than expected to operate, suffer more downtime incidents, and complicate efforts to introduce new products and services.