Going ‘Colo’ is now within reach of even the smallest businesses. But how to decide which data centre to pick can prove daunting? NGD’s Steve Davis offers some practical advice.
In my previous blog “There’s no such thing as a free lunch” I looked at the continuing issue of SMEs undercutting when it comes to data security and argued secure data centres need no longer be considered out of their reach.
With the growing choice of good quality and affordable colocation facilities available, prudent SMEs concerned about their data security and business continuity should now be wrestling with the increasing dilemma of ‘which’ colo partner to pick and how to differentiate between them - rather than ‘why’ use a colo in the first place.
Here’s some plain and simple advice. When it comes to price it’s rather like booking a flight and comparing a budget airline or charter fight versus a major scheduled carrier. On the face of it the budget and charter guys will most likely appear cheaper and better value. That’s until you click through to the next page and see all the catches such as additional compulsory and optional extras. Things like inconvenient flight times, less frequency, hold baggage weight limits, costs to sit together or for more legroom, meals and refreshments…it all starts to add up.
Certainly sufficient space for now and the future, proven certifiable security and operational credentials, high levels of resilience and power, along with DR and business continuity contingencies are also very important criteria to carefully evaluate. But watch out for the small print and any hidden costs and get out clauses.
Similarly, to attract smaller customers into colo, some providers will not be as transparent as others. Be sure to look beyond the headline deals especially on rack power and connectivity, infrastructure level and official certifications, and type of service level agreements on offer.
There are also practical things to consider such as availability of (free) parking facilities and meeting rooms, as well transportation and installation of your existing and new IT systems - often known as server migration. NGD has just extended its range of on-site customer and engineering services to include a comprehensive rack design and installation solution so that customers can move their IT in quickly and easily without the headache of setting things up, leaving them to focus on the running of their businesses.
When it comes down to it, a few colo providers will be all inclusive, some limited, and others offering pretty much everything but all charged on top. All ways round, doing that extra mile of due diligence on who to select as your data centre partner will ensure you have an enjoyable and safe flight!
Don’t put your business at risk by delaying your journey to a secure data centre destination any longer.