Outsourcing your data center services to a purpose-built data center offers greater efficiency, reliability and security. It also opens new opportunities to connect with an ecosystem of other relevant service provider providers and partners. If your business is looking to make the switch, it’s important to get the data center migration right. This will make sure you avoid unplanned downtime and unnecessary costs. This five-step guide to planning your move will help minimize your business disruption:
1. Set your business goals?
As with any business decision, you need to be clear on why your company is making the move to an external data center. There are significant operation benefits including lower costs but outsourcing your data center management will also free-up the business to focus on core strength and long-term goals. Before your company plan a data center migration, you need to be clear about your broader business goals and how they’ll be supported by your outsourcing strategy.
2. Identify risks
Large-scale data migration is a complex project and even with detailed planning there will be unforeseen circumstances to deal with. Stating any potential risk, whether large or small, offers you the opportunity to draw up plans. This may mean that temporary equipment must be on standby, move workflows elsewhere, or decide how to manage unplanned downtime. You want the move to have a minimal impact on customers and employees, so identify high-risk applications and critical systems that need to stay in the air. Clearly identify who should know what about problems and your strategy for overcoming them. Data center staff can help you with this migration process and identifying risks.
3. Communication is of great importance
It is important to determine how the move affects customers, employees, business partners and other internal or external stakeholders so you can communicate potential risks well in advance. It gives them the opportunity to make their own schedule and ensure that they are not negatively affected by unpleasant surprises. When moving critical infrastructure and applications, it is important that all relevant stakeholders are well aware of the process, expected time schedules and contingency plans. You must also plan to get rapid support from suppliers to ensure that they are ready to use when you need them to take action.
4. Planning the logistics
Moving internal infrastructure to a new data center is a significant physical project, so you must be prepared for the logistics that are needed to make the switch. This may mean that the equipment is packaged correctly to prevent damage or labeling and of course, to prevent confusion on the other hand. Make sure you are aware of the layout of the new data center and see if it offers support services that will help you migrate. For example, does it offer room to test your equipment on site or to install installations that bring your infrastructure into the data room?
5. Design for improvement
It makes little to no sense to switch to an external data center if everything is set up in the same way. It is important to consider which improvements you want to achieve, whether it involves less rack space or better interconnection. Design the new set-up to achieve these goals, taking into account any future possibilities or flexibility that you need. This will help you prevent further restructuring in the future as your business continues to grow.
Migration to a data center with colocation provides significant benefits, but it can be a risky and challenging project if it is not planned effectively. To ensure a successful move, everything must be planned in advance, from physically moving infrastructure to communication with suppliers and customers. Ideally, your data center should provide support to make the move smooth and painless – whether during the planning phase or providing installation services to get you up and running with minimal effort.