As technology advances, organizations are forced to adapt or risk falling behind. One trend that has recently blossomed is the adoption of a hybrid IT infrastructure—usually as a cost-saving and scalable model, and colocation is making it possible. Colocation offers many benefits that appeal to small to medium-sized businesses, which is clear by its growth: The data center colocation market is expected to reach $51.8 billion by 2020, according to Allied Market Research.
Here are five reasons your growing business might need colocation:
1. You Need Additional Resources and Reliable Support
Small businesses experience the most benefits (and impact) when moving away from an in-house to a colocation model because of the added resources they receive from their colocation provider. They are able to afford much more than they could on their own—N+1 systems for power, diesel backup generators and multiple internet backbone providers included.
Most organizations that choose colocation have IT teams and support staff who build, maintain and manage the organization’s infrastructure. However, some colocation providers have the knowledge and staff to offer IT support on-demand. The benefits of having a colocation partner that provides “remote hands” is invaluable—you never know when you may need a helping hand. Having trained staff available 24/7/365 alleviates the stress of making sure your IT team is always available and ready to mobilize If an issue arises.
2. You Need Enhanced Security and Disaster Protection Services
When it comes to physical security measures, colocation centers employ everything from biometric scanners to video surveillance to anti-tailgating technologies. Plus, most facilities are built to withstand floods, storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, and fires—so if your business is caught in the middle of a disaster, your colocation center is prepared for crisis mode and is knowledgeable about recovery procedures. For instance, if there’s a power outage at the data center due to a storm, onsite generators will turn on and keep your IT systems running. The facility’s top-of-the-line security measures keep your hardware physically secure, and keep your data safe, too. But you shouldn’t stop there—take advantage of your colocation providers’ disaster recovery programs if they offer this service. There are several ways to set this up, from duplicating your network at a secondary recovery site to replicating your environment in the cloud.
3. You Need Greater Flexibility
When you have your IT infrastructure in-house, your physical storage capacity and resources have a limit. Businesses looking to scale up or down require the flexibility that colocation offers to quickly alter their environment. A company can typically acquire additional equipment without worrying where it will go and how it will be powered and serviced. A colocation strategy means that you choose your data center location, whether that be near the network edge or at a site optimal for disaster recovery.
4. You’re Looking to Cut Costs
Since you’re sharing data center resources, you reduce capital expenditures on space, heating/cooling, power, and other IT services. By preventing downtime, you are saving yourself the time, energy and costs associated with not being able to work. Outsourcing your data center also means that you’re no longer responsible for hiring personnel to oversee your facilities, saving you man hours while freeing up your IT staff to focus on revenue-generating projects.
5. You’re Transitioning to a Hybrid IT Infrastructure
Hybrid IT is on the rise—according to Gartner, by 2017, an estimated 50% of enterprises will be using hybrid environments due to the flexibility and freedom it provides when deploying virtual systems. Planning for hybrid scenarios with cloud services evolves from data center colocation, so organizations looking to move to a hybrid solution would be wise to find the best colocation partner for their needs. Some colocation centers provide private cloud and a range of managed services to help you execute, manage and monitor your hybrid infrastructure.
Growth and expansion are inevitable in business—but the companies that don’t scale properly won’t be successful for long. Implementing a colocation strategy with a reputable provider will help ensure that growth and expansion—on the IT front—is managed effectively.
If you’d like additional information about how to identify the right colocation provider for your company, you’ll find OnRamp’s guide to be helpful: “The Top 10 Critical Questions to Ask Your Colocation Provider.” OnRamp provides all of the data center services businesses need to continue to grow and scale their IT operations.
Additional Resources on This Topic: