Data Center   Latest 0 comments on The Perks of Locating Your Data Center in Texas

The Perks of Locating Your Data Center in Texas

One key decision for organizations is choosing a data center location.

Companies look for a data center market offering competitive options, low hazard risk, tax incentives, and business-friendly environments.

If you have a business with infrastructure requirements, you should be considering Texas.

Continue Reading “The Perks of Locating Your Data Center in Texas”

Latest 0 comments on 2021-2022 Trends Across Industries

2021-2022 Trends Across Industries

As the world starts to look toward 2021-22 for strategic business planning, we know that we’re not going to come out of the pandemic and go back to what we were.

The business landscape looks a lot different now than in Q4 2019.

Forecasting is also very tough — but trying to anticipate what the trajectory is going to be for your organization helps to guide you on how you’re going to emerge from the pandemic.

Focusing on organizational agility will help businesses be successful as we step into a new future phase.

Here are a few trends that emerged in 2020 and that will continue to be of interest as companies put together strategic plans for 2021-2022. 

Remote work and security

When the pandemic forced workers and students to remote locations, it was often last-minute and haphazard. Some offices allowed workers to bring anything they needed to set up a home office, while others offered a set dollar amount to fund the relocation.

One problem with the rush to work and study from home is that support organizations have been hammered by problems resulting from the lack of consistency in routers and hardware.

Three trends that will help smooth the transition in 2021-22 include branded office bundles, WAN-connected laptops to address bandwidth issues, and improved cameras and sound in laptops.

VoIP, phone systems and Zoom: synonymous with 2020

Zoom, which grew from a startup in 2011 to going public in 2019, became a household name during the pandemic.

From business calls to holiday family Zoom calls, voice over internet protocol (VoIP) has boomed over the past year. Other existing large corporate tools such as Cisco’s Webex, Microsoft’s Teams, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting, and Verizon’s BlueJeans are also providing state-of-the-art videoconferencing systems, facilitating remote work across the globe.

This sector is primed to see an influx of startups in the next few years, as we recognize the shift to remote meetings instead of required in-person roundtables.

Mergers & Acquisitions

While the pandemic did slow down the merger and acquisitions market for a while, it has surged at the end of 2020. Here’s a summary of the biggest M&As so far this year.

  • In February, Fintech giant, Intuit (INTU) announced that it would be acquiring Credit Karma for approximately $7.1 billion.
  • Just Eat Takeaway entered into an agreement to acquire Grubhub (GRUB) for $7.3 billion.
  • In July, Uber (UBER) entered into a $2.65 billion deal to acquire Postmates.
  • Visa (V) announced the decision of Plaid’s acquisition for $5.3 billion in January 2020.
  • The acquisition announcement of E*TRADE (ETFC) for approximately $13 billion by Morgan Stanley (MS) in February 2020 has been one of the biggest acquisitions of 2020.
  • In February, Salesforce (CRM) announced a $1.33 billion deal to acquire Vlocity.
  • Microsoft (MSFT) acquired Affirmed Networks in April for approximately $1.35 billion.
  • Zoox has been acquired by Amazon (AMZN) for roughly $1.2 billion.
  • Koch Industries acquired the remaining equity stake in Infor held by Golden Gate Capital in a deal worth close to $13 billion.
  • In January, Insight Partners entered into an agreement to acquire Veeam in a $5 billion deal.
  • In March, BMC (a KKR portfolio company), signed a definitive agreement to purchase Compuware for an estimated $2 billion.
  • SoFi entered an agreement to acquire Galileo for $1.2 billion.

It remains to be seen how these acquisitions will affect business operations. It will be interesting to watch if buying during a soft economic market will pay off in the long run.

The changes that are here to stay

While 2020 was certainly unprecedented in how businesses across the globe worked remotely, the lessons learned over the past year will reshape how we conduct business going forward.

If you’d like to read more about business trends for the next year, check out this Forbes article about their top 10 trends for 2021.

While your business is forecasting for 2021-22, be sure to consider how you’re keeping your data safe and secure in remote environments.

Contact us today to discover how FIBERTOWN can help you with data protection in your strategic planning for 2021 and 2022.

Data Center   Latest 0 comments on How does data center colocation compare to the cloud?

How does data center colocation compare to the cloud?

The way your data is stored and managed is the biggest difference between hosting within a colocation data center and on the cloud. Storing your data at a data center with colocation or storing it in the cloud is a matter of preference and convenience.

Both colocation and cloud-based and hybrid systems allow for the shared cost of storage, whether it’s physical or virtual. Continue Reading “How does data center colocation compare to the cloud?”

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.