Latest 0 comments on The Cost Benefit Variables of Colocation

The Cost Benefit Variables of Colocation

Whether you’re searching for a data center colocation partner for the first time or simply need to validate your chosen partner, the number of variables to consider can seem overwhelming. While some think of colocation as an insurance policy against downtime, it’s more prudent to consider the costs and benefits of this model. Below are some critical considerations that should factor into your decision.

Analyze the Risks

If situations like Hurricane Harvey and COVID-19 have taught us anything, it’s that we can plan all day long, but never anticipate every possible scenario. While private (on-premises) data centers housed in corporate offices do offer a high degree of convenience (i.e., the “hot closet” of servers conveniently located down the hall), they seldom stand the emergency test.

We’ve recently watched as historic flooding has brought companies to their knees, making on-premises data centers virtually inaccessible for weeks on end. More recently, building closures due to the pandemic have prevented IT personnel from accessing and maintaining critical systems necessary for supporting the company and remote workers. Evaluate what will happen to your company if your data is out of reach for an extended period of time.

Determine Your Tolerance for Downtime

Downtime is a dirty word for CIOs and IT managers. However, scheduled downtime is more common in private data centers than in a colocation facility, and unscheduled downtime is even more common. A recent industry survey indicates that organizations reported an average of 69 hours per year of unplanned downtime across systems due to human error.

Most downtime events resulted from configuration errors made during deployment by internal IT personnel.

While the cost of downtime directly impacts the bottom line, it also can affect a company’s reputation, client retention rates and employee satisfaction. The stakes also go up by industry. Consider what unplanned downtime means for organizations like hospitals and financial institutions.

Calculate the Economies of Scale

Retrofitting a commercial building to accommodate a data center is challenging at best, especially when you consider the construction costs and specialized design features. Some of the considerations include:

  • Location – Critical facilities must be accessible by major roadways and located outside of 500-year floodplains, but not too close to airports and railroads. They also must be close to multiple fiberoptic data connectivity pathways.
  • Structure – To reduce the likelihood of storm damage and loss of access, the building must be “storm-hardened” with reinforced concrete construction, a wind-rated roof, and blast guard window film to protect against water damage and flying debris.
  • Power & Cooling – Since the environment of the data center can never change, redundancy and concurrent maintainability for the systems delivering power and cooling is absolutely critical. If a component of the system goes down, this structure ensures functionality. In addition, the backup generator must provide 100% coverage of the entire facility and have a minimum of 24 hours onsite fuel supply without outside refueling.
  • Internet Service – A blended Internet solution is needed for data centers. It typically incorporates three different service providers that enter the building at various entry points so if one goes out, two backups remain.
  • Fire Prevention – A highly sophisticated fire prevention and detection system must include multi-zoned systems above and below raised flooring; layered smoke and heat detection systems; chemical fire suppression agents; and double inter-locked, pre-action suppression systems.
  • Security – Security staff must be in place 24/7, along with closed-circuit TV systems that are monitored in real-time with footage backed up for at least 30 days. In addition, there must be a single point for entry/exit with personnel traps and layered emergency exits that don’t allow for re-entry.

Building out a private data center is typically not a cost-effective proposition, which accounts for the trend toward colocation providers.

Evaluate Your Staffing Requirements

It takes an entire team to staff a data center, diverting critical personnel away from core business activities. It’s important to note that data center quality management and facilities personnel will have additional skill sets that drive employment costs up by a margin of 30% or more over standard office building personnel. Ask yourself if your IT department is bogged down with data center facilities and environmental management.

Do they have time to focus on building efficiencies in your business? If not, it may be time to make some important changes.

Talk to Accounting

It’s necessary to understand whether your company considers it advantageous to carry more operating expenses (OPEX) or capital expenses (CAPEX). The distinction is important as they are treated differently for accounting and tax purposes.

Common CAPEX expenses you can avoid with colocation include:

  • New or legacy facility upgrade design and engineering
  • Redundant cooling infrastructure and equipment
  • Redundant power delivery systems and equipment providing power and backup
  • Specialized security feature construction

Consider the Opportunity Cost

  • When a storm is brewing in the Gulf of Mexico, does your IT staff lose more sleep worrying about protecting mission-critical facilities than they do about executing emergency safety precautions to protect your data?
  • When a new construction project begins down the street, do you worry about the loss of your power or Internet service?
  • Have government work-from-home mandates prevented key personnel from accessing and maintaining business-critical systems or data?
  • Does your team spend more time managing IT infrastructure than delivering value to your core business?

Call Fibertown Today

If you’re evaluating your current on-premises data center, your current colocation partner, or would like more information about how colocation can save money and increase efficiency in the long-run, call Fibertown today so you can focus on business-critical operations tomorrow.

Latest   Service Updates 0 comments on Fibertown Operations Update: Precautionary Response Measures

Fibertown Operations Update: Precautionary Response Measures

In the rapidly changing COVID-19 situation, we want you to know that Fibertown remains the Partner that you have come to know and trust. We are committed to your success and to being here to support your needs in this time of uncertainty. Our team has taken actions and updated protocols in response to the COVID-19 threat and will continue to do so as new information is made available by the CDC, local authorities and other entities.

With the opening of the economy and reduced restrictions to travel, we encourage our customers to maintain travel and potential for exposure at the lowest possible levels.

  • Limit visits to the data center to only necessary work
  • Maintain appropriate social distancing measures while in transit and while on site
  • Wear face coverings while on site (be prepared with your own face covering)
  • Schedule your visits to the site when possible so we can manage the number people in any given area
  • Utilize the on-site Fibertown personnel as an extension of your team
  • We are still performing on site hands and eyes services free of charge

Contact your local Network Operations Center with any needs or concerns
Bryan: 979-393-9882 brynoc@fibertown.com
Houston: 713-341-6085 hounoc@fibertown.com

We have taken many steps to maintain the health and safety of our personnel, customers and others during the events of Coronavirus and COVID-19.

Our objective remains to be your trusted partner while keeping the health of our personnel, customers and others as a top priority.
Bryan: 979-393-9882 brynoc@fibertown.com
Houston: 713-341-6085 hounoc@fibertown.com
For more information and updates, please visit this event page: http://alrt.it/74nQV/shac/5g3-8b3dd048681f432a1b36
If you need further assistance, call or text Fibertown Data Centers Emergency Number +19792128582

Latest   Service Updates 0 comments on Fibertown COVID-19 Operational Timeline

Fibertown COVID-19 Operational Timeline

In the rapidly changing COVID-19 pandemic situation, we want you to know that FIBERTOWN remains the Partner that you have come to know and trust. We are committed to the health and safety of our personnel, our customers and to your success. An important part of this commitment is for our team to be here to support your needs in this time of uncertainty. Our team has taken actions and updated protocols in response to the COVID-19 threat and will continue to do so as new information is made available by the CDC, local authorities and other entities. We remain committed to the continuity of our services.

FIBERTOWN data centers is an Essential business providing critical facilities and services supporting government and many industries listed as critical and essential in the current official orders recommending people shelter in place or work safe and stay home. We will remain operational to support your needs for the duration of this event.

 

04.06.2020

Scheduling of site visits is requested so we can manage the quantity people in any given space.

04.03.2020

We began wearing face coverings while on site to help prevent the spread of any contagion.

03.25.2020

FIBERTOWN personnel were divided into two teams with one team working from home while the other reports to work on site each day as normal. This team isolation will continue throughout the COVID-19 event with rotations following extensive cleaning every 21 days.

03.24.2020

We began offering free on-site hands and eyes support to all customers.

03.20.2020

We began temperature screening of personnel wishing to enter our facilities.

03.18.2020

Limited scheduled maintenance site visits to critical maintenance only. Other regular activities will be rescheduled. Critical service vendors have been engaged to assure continuation of critical services availability.

03.16.2020

On March 16, 2020 we asked each team member to self-screen prior to leaving their home for work each day. Each team member will take their temperature and perform exercise activities. Anyone with a temperature of 100° F or greater or experiencing unusual shortness of breath after light exercise or other flu like symptoms will alert their supervisor and not report to work.

03.13.2020

FIBERTOWN updated company policies related to attendance and added 40 hours paid sick leave benefit for personnel whose households are affected by COVID-19. We are asking team members to stay home if they are not well. We are calling on those team members who are healthy to be available and will be offering additional overtime hours as needed to continue our critical operations. Part time and after-hours personnel will be offered additional shifts as needed.

03.10.2020

Verbal screening protocols went into effect. All persons entering a FIBERTOWN facility (i.e. staff, customers, visitors or vendors) will be verbally screened by Security in the lobby prior to being allowed access. If the verbal survey results in an affirmative risk response, the individual will be asked to not enter the site and the site team will advise the main point of contact for the customer or supplier. The screening questions consist of confirmation of the following:

  1. Are you currently experiencing any flu-like symptoms (including fever, body aches/pain, sore throat, cough, or shortness of breath)?
  2. Have you been in contact with a confirmed Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) patient or someone who is under quarantine in the past 20 days?
  3. Have you visited any area outside the state of Texas or any COVIP-19 hot spots in the past 21 days?

03.03.2020

Implementation of special cleaning protocols:

  1. Common touch points such as doorknobs, finger scanners, badge scanner equipment, refrigerator handles, elevator controls, shared keyboards, door hardware, restrooms, copier equipment etc. disinfected twice per day by bacteria sanitizing wipes.
  2. Conference rooms, break room tables, kitchen counter tops disinfected additionally with bacteria sanitizing wipes.
  3. Stop shaking hands when greeting. Practicing social distancing.
  4. We asked all team members to wipe down their desk, keyboard, cell phone and office phones with disinfecting wipes daily, wash hands with soap and water and or use alcohol-based hand cleaner several times a day, wash hands with soap and water and or use alcohol-based hand cleaner before entering and after exiting any room or meeting.

 

At FIBERTOWN we take our critical role as a trusted partner very seriously. We practice dual site monitoring from the Network Operations Center at each site where we monitor and manage critical infrastructure of all locations. We have cross trained personnel at each location, so they are prepared to work alternatively at other sites providing customer support as needed. It is our commitment to remain the trusted partner that our customers have come to know over time. We are committed to your success.

We will continue to respond as necessary to changes in the rapidly developing COVID-19 situation.

Customers are encouraged to utilize our free remote services to maintain travel and potential for exposure at the lowest possible levels. Utilize us as an extension of your team.

Bryan: 979-393-9882
brynoc@fibertown.com

Houston 713-341-6085
hounoc@fibertown.com

Latest   Service Updates 0 comments on Fibertown Operations Update: Stay Home, Work Safe and Shelter-In-Place Orders

Fibertown Operations Update: Stay Home, Work Safe and Shelter-In-Place Orders

As you know, the State of Texas is leaving shelter-in-place orders to local authorities. We wanted to update you regarding business continuity at our facilities in Bryan (Brazos County) and Houston (Harris County) at this crucial time.

Regarding our Houston facility, Harris County has ordered a stay home, work safe order effective until April 3. Brazos County, together with the cities of Bryan and College Station, has ordered a shelter-in-place until April 7. Both of these require citizens to remain at home unless they are conducting essential business.

We want to assure you that our Fibertown data centers operate as an essential, critical industry, so we remain fully operational and ready to provide service as needed. We have crews covering our 7×24 operations with backup teams ready should anyone become ill or be required to quarantine due to COVID 19.

Our team has taken actions and updated protocols in response to the COVID-19 threat and will continue to modify our approach as new information is made available by the CDC, local authorities and other entities. Rest assured we are still following very strict sanitization protocols at both locations. Additionally, we’ve implemented pre-screening of individuals who request access to limit the possibility of an infected individual entering. We’ve also rescheduled non-critical maintenance and suspended unnecessary site visitors.

Fibertown data centers provide critical facilities and services supporting government and many industries listed as critical and essential in the current official orders recommended by Brazos and Harris Counties. We will remain operational to support your needs throughout the duration of this event.

We encourage customers to continue to limit travel to prevent the spread of COVID-19. We’re happy to be your hands and eyes/on-site support service team (offered at no charge) during the pandemic.

We hope you and your teams are staying healthy during this time.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our customer support team.

979-393-9100
noc@fibertown.com
Fibertown.com