Data Center

Anonymity is Crucial to Data Center Maturity Model Success

In a post back in April I shared some information about the success The Green Grid (TGG) has been having with its Data Center Maturity Model, and how more than 400 unique organizations have signed on and are actively using the tool to begin an assesment. There are 261 completed assessments in the DCMM, which provides a substantial data base of comparison information. In this post, I want to share one of the key reasons why the DCMM has proved to be so popular, and useful.

As noted in the April post, this is what the DCMM is all about:

The DCMM provides a way for organizations to benchmark themselves against other data centers of similar size, structure, location and many other attributes – more than 60 criteria in all. The idea is to enable companies to gauge the relative maturity of their data center, in terms of both IT and facilities, and identify steps they can take to achieve greater energy efficiency and sustainability.

Now, to be sure, the DCMM is not the only model available for measuring data center effectiveness. The U.S. Dept. of Energy has its own set of tools, the Data Center Profiler (DC Pro), which includes a profiling tool and a set of tools to perform energy assessments on specific areas of a data center.  The European Union likewise has its own, the European Code of Conduct for Energy Efficiency in Data Centres.

Each of these tools can help organizations find ways to increase energy efficiency in their data centers. And it should be noted the DOE and EU is not in competition with TGG; rather, these government entities work with TGG because we’re all after the same thing: increased energy efficiency.

But one reason the DCMM has seen far more adoption is that it allows anonymity with respect to data center owners and locations. That’s important for companies that can’t disclose the location of their data centers for physical security reasons.

Lots of companies fall into that category because their data centers account for large sums of revenue; they can’t risk disclosing their location. But they are still interested in energy savings so have welcomed the opportunity to use the DCMM.

Now, you may think, if a company doesn’t have to disclose its identity or location, what’s to keep it from making up phony data that just makes the organization look good to its management?  The simple answer is, it’s in their best interest to tell the truth. The vast majority of DCMM users are professional engineers who are trying to get real answers about how to improve energy efficiency. If they don’t put in accurate data, they won’t get accurate results. It’s the old garbage in, garbage out syndrome.

We’re excited that so many companies are employing the DCMM because the more that use it, the more valuable it becomes. With data from more data centers in the model, the model delivers more accurate information. What’s more, the chances are greater that you’ll find data centers that are suitable to benchmark against yours. Try it out and see for yourself.


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