October 11, 2018 - Kenneth Odem
How to Choose a Colocation Provider
For many reasons, companies across all industries rely on colocation providers to house their enterprise instead of keeping it in-house. While the benefits may vary from business to business, some of the advantages are universal:
- Increased time dedicated to revenue-generating endeavors instead of dealing with the management of the data center infrastructure (generators, UPS’s, cooling, network redundancies, personnel)
- Scalable network capacity, such as adding additional cabinets on demand without much logistics
- Meeting your specific compliance criteria needs, particularly with data-sensitive industries such as healthcare and financial firms
- Reliance on data center provider to manage the entire colocated infrastructure all the way up to the application layer
Based on these benefits, it’s important that you engage your IT department and other stakeholders to identify your goals and needs, so you can go into the search process fully-equipped with the knowledge to choose the right provider for you. These questions not only determine the needs of your company but can help determine what specifications you’ll require from your provider:
Capacity & Scalability
What are your current network, power and space demands? Will this remain consistent, or fluctuate? Most colocation providers have great flexibility in all of these factors, however, allowing your colocation provider to aware of your growth plan upfront can be very helpful in the long-run.
Some colocation providers offer amenities such as 24/7/365 basic and smart remote hands, along with KVM/IP, serial console etc., so being physically nearby isn’t a necessity. However, some businesses prefer to be relatively close to keep costs down for other reasons, such as for network transport services or perhaps for internal policy.
Is this a factor for your organization? Often times, a colocation provider can also have multiple locations, as is the case for Wowrack’s colocation services, which has POP’s all over the world including our own Seattle colocation data center.
You’ll want to ensure your colocation facility has the power capacity to handle not only your needs for today but also for the future. Additionally, power density per rack is another major factor, especially for high data processing applications that may need lots of CPU or GPU. Wowrack, for example, can support up to 20kW of power per rack. Be sure to know this about your prospective provider.
Security & Support
You should always be able to fully trust your colocation facility with safeguarding your enterprise. Not only does this include the physical security and confidentiality of the actual premises, but it may also include being able to support your organization in the way of providing services that enable further security within your own infrastructure via the providers managed services.
Does your organization have a team of experts who can handle all aspects of network security and supporting your infrastructure? Managed security services is a great option which often is much less than having a team of 24/7/365 experts on your own payroll.
Disaster Recovery Protocols
Just as much as proactive security is a concern, so should disaster recovery methods. This is a necessary factor that you should address with any provider prior to signing on, as a single outage could potentially cost your company an average of $5,600 per minute.
Financial losses aside, these issues could result in PR nightmares or loss of reputation, or even valued client business. A worthwhile company will work with you to establish customized DRaaS solutions or backup plans for your peace of mind.
While Wowrack’s 18,000 sq ft. data colocation facility in Seattle is its flagship, it also has several POP’s across the USA and in Europe. Its SOC-1/SSAE-16 Type II carrier neutral headquarters in Seattle boasts a total of 3MW of power capacity with 2N and N+1 UPS redundancies and N+1 cooling redundancies, and its DRaaS solutions and security protocols are unmatched. With decades of experience under our belt, Wowrack’s team personally works with prospective clients to architect, customize, and deploy the right solution for you.
Contact Wowrack today to see how their data colocation services can benefit your business.