How do you pick the right wholesale colocation vendor?

First, consider your strengths as a business. In what markets do you operate? How have you been successful? Where is your talent? What products and services net you the most profit? How does the IT organization and the enterprise data center support these strengths, both directly and indirectly?

Second, consider the regulatory compliance that the government, your clients, and your vendors expect from your business. Are you or your clients regulated by HIPAA, FISMA, NIST, Sarbanes Oxley, or the FDA? Do your vendors or clients expect SAS 70 data center certifications and TIA 942 compliant data centers? Is there a likelihood that the markets in which you operate will be regulated in the future?

Third, consider your uptime requirements. Rated-4 data center facilities offer 99.995% uptime or better. That’s 28 minutes of downtime per year or less. If you ask your clients, they probably think a zero downtime data center is what you should provide. What are your organizational expectations for downtime due to data center facilities?

Fourth, consider your telecommunications needs. Do you need multiple carriers? Does the outsource data center charge monthly cross connect fees? Is the provider carrier neutral?

Finally, evaluate alternative vendors.

If your IT organization is well-aligned with the business, wholesale colocation makes sense. If you plan to own hardware and employ IT staff or IT service providers that you trust, wholesale colocation is a perfect fit.

Data center compliance and data center certifications vary among outsource computer room providers. Compliance issues are driving more companies to wholesale colocation facilities with data center regulatory compliance. Providers who carry data center certifications can further reduce the costs of compliance .

Uptime is a major differentiator when it comes to vendors. Data center power redundancy varies among providers. Two of everything (N+N data center redundancy) is the exception, not the rule. Make sure you clearly understand the data center power redundancy, data center cooling redundancy , and telecom infrastructure. If it looks like a single point of failure, it probably is. Hardened data center facilities are just as important, depending on your region and the associated risks. F5 tornado resistant data centers are critical for Midwest colocation facilities.

Data center pricing models vary. Make sure you understand how power, cooling and space allotments are billed. Watch for add-on fees, port charges, and other monthly mystery fees. Affordable colocation exists, and colocation pricing models can greatly affect long-term costs.

Carrier neutral data centers offer the most telecom flexibility. Carrier neutral data centers with no cross connect fees can reduce costs.

Lifeline Data Centers provides 99.995% uptime wholesale data center facilities to companies who need high uptime, flexibility and options. Lifeline is a carrier neutral data center with 15 providers and no monthly cross connect fees. Call Lifeline at 317.423.2591 to learn more about Lifeline’s wholesale colocation and office space solutions.

Alex Carroll

Alex Carroll

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Alex, co-owner, is responsible for all real estate, construction and mission critical facilities: hardened buildings, power systems, cooling systems, fire suppression, and environmentals. Alex also manages relationships with the telecommunications providers and has an extensive background in IT infrastructure support, database administration and software design and development. Alex architected Lifeline’s proprietary GRCA system and is hands-on every day in the data center.