With demands steadily increasing for enterprise data centers, it’s no surprise that nearly 90 percent of data center operators throughout North America and Europe are planning to expand their budgets for their facilities in the near future, according to a recent survey.

And, contrary to some predictions, they’re not solely relying on the cloud to handle that extra capacity, a report by 451 Research revealed.

So, what are the most frequently cited options? Based on the study, the top three solutions companies are implementing include consolidation, the cloud and colocation. And companies generally start to consider a move when they reach about 75 percent utilization.

The least favorable options, according to the survey, include building new data centers or buying an existing one.

Survey reveals plans to increase spending on data center facilitiesIf your company foresees reaching capacity or the need to modernize in the near future, it’s wise to carefully research the most common options for expanding data center capacity beforehand. Here are just a few considerations for each.

Consolidation: Companies may want to consider consolidating numerous data centers into more compact centralized centers to boost efficiencies. Although taking this approach can be time consuming, it can lead to the need for less hardware, including servers and routers. As a result, this approach can lead to cost savings and the ability to reduce the company’s footprint on the environment.

On a national scope, the federal government has been leading the way. It took the initiative to formally consolidate its data centers through the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative. It was created in 2010 to minimize the federal government’s impact on the environment by reducing the costs of software, hardware and operations; boosting the efficiency of computing platforms; and promoting the use of green IT.

Colocation: More companies are starting to shift to colocation centers for their data center operations, primarily as a way to rely upon a more robust data center than they may have accomplished by running their own server space. Colocation centers, which rent space, equipment and bandwidth to clients, provide 24/7 support, the latest technology and specialists to provide data center and network services.

Top colocation centers can provide companies the advantages of reducing downtime risks and costs, while increasing flexibility. As a company expands, it can rely on a colocation center to accommodate its additional needs. Also, colocation centers offer companies the ability to have more control over equipment without the need to build out a new data center.

Cloud: Companies who aren’t concerned about managing or controlling the infrastructure of servers may want to consider cloud providers as a viable option. When choosing cloud providers, a company also should make sure that the same level of services are available as with other data center solutions, including 24/7 specialized service and adherence to regulations that rule its industry.

Whether you’re faced with the need to replace aging equipment or need to accommodate your business’ growth more quickly, you’re likely debating numerous options to transform your data center operations. It could be that one solution may work best for you or a hybrid could be more effective. Lifeline Data Centers, which has had extensive experience in helping enterprises figure out that dilemma, can help you determine the best solution. Contact us today to take the steps toward a more effective data center solution.

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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.