Sustainability is a significant consideration for your business. Environmental responsibility is an essential part of meeting your corporate social objectives and developing a positive brand perception. A recent BSR study found that 72 per cent of businesses see sustainability as one of their top business priorities.
When you think of sustainability, your mind probably jumps straight to reducing your carbon footprint with renewable energy sources. Yet before you deliver on this longer-term objective it’s worth considering how your business can use less of its existing resources. Outsourcing data centre services will help streamline your operations, reducing the amount of energy and resources you use. Here are three ways moving to a colocation facility will help your business become more sustainable and efficient.
Operating an internal data centre puts your business at a disadvantage when it comes to sustainability. It’s unlikely that your office building was specifically designed for the sustainable management of IT infrastructure. Over the years you’ve continuously added more equipment and modified the environment to suit evolving business needs. Moving to a facility that was purpose-built to manage data at scale will allow you to dramatically reduce the space you’re using. This will also help to minimise capital expenditure and overheads.
How often does your data centre equipment need maintenance? You’re wasting valuable resources that could be allocated to more strategic work. Moving to an external data centre will also allow you to take advantage of centralised maintenance, so more of your resources can be applied to IT projects that have real value for your business whether that’s developing new applications or adding new features to existing ones.
Maximise energy efficiency
One of the main drawbacks of an internal data centre is the inability to correctly measure the power you’re using. Your office building hasn’t been designed to give you that information, but there’s a strong chance you’re using too much power even if you can’t measure it. You’re likely working your infrastructure too hard and over-investing in maintenance so that nothing falls over. Outsourcing your data centre management will alleviate this concern.
A well-designed and operated data centre will measure your usage to provide relevant and actionable insights about the operation of your infrastructure or hosted service. More importantly, you’ll only pay for what you actually use, so you can scale the solution to meet changing business needs.
Outsourcing your data centre operations will allow your business to become more efficient and, in turn, more sustainable, while giving you better cloud connectivity with lower latency and much improved security. Moving your systems to the cloud gives even more of a boost to your sustainability, because it both lowers your rack footprint and sees more of your IT service hosted in highly energy efficient data centres.
If you’re a smaller business, the amount of power you use isn’t going to have a huge impact, but these small changes can be part of a broader shift to sustainable energy. For larger enterprises, maintaining an internal data centre is challenging and complex. Moving to a specialised hosting environment will ensure you’re not using (or paying for) more space and power than you need.
Simon Cooper is Chief Operating Officer, NEXTDC