DCIM 3.0 – the next evolution in colocation capacity management

This audio was created using Microsoft Azure Speech Services

Next generation DCIM software is built for the modern IT landscape, where hybrid workloads sprawl across edge, colocation, and cloud-based infrastructure. Its monitoring, planning, and modeling tools dramatically improve operations for all IT environments. Multi-tenant colocation providers, in particular, can benefit. Facing surging demand from a discerning customer base and unprecedented energy volatility, colocation operators should consider DCIM to improve capacity planning, simplify multi-site operations, and streamline reporting and billing requirements.

DCIM is effectively a colocation provider’s digital twin, a virtual rendering of the data center white space that contextualizes its real-time operating conditions. By visualizing the data center, operators can optimize for a more efficient and productive space that supports the growing demand for capacity. As detailed in the video below, Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxureTM IT provides aerial and 3D views, tenant maps, and asset-level network connections, enriched with real time data.

Optimize capacity and minimize risk

Colocation operators should focus on minimizing stranded capacity. Automatically tracking a data center’s key performance indicators is essential to uncovering opportunities for incremental business within existing infrastructure. Whether your business needs to accommodate an unplanned expansion of a current tenant or must rapidly transform wholesale suites into retail-ready cages, using DCIM to simulate these changes will minimize the risk of exceeding available cooling and power capacity and allow for faster implementation.

In a vast improvement over manually compiled spreadsheets, EcoStruxure IT provides real-time asset inventory to track the available space, power, and cooling that’s been sold versus what predefined reports and dashboards tracking overall capacity allowing operators to make quicker day-to-day decisions. Through simple integrations with third-party systems such as CRM or ticketing software, DCIM can be fully integrated into existing workflows to empower colocation sales and operations teams.

Use of DCIM at colocation facility

Simplify multi-site operations

Many colocation providers operate more than one data center in disparate locations, making it difficult to ensure consistency and simplicity. Inconsistencies impact both data center operations, as it makes it harder to deploy engineers across multiple sites or centralize technical expertise, and the tenant experience, as enterprises want to partner with standardized colocation platforms as they scale hybrid IT globally.

EcoStruxure IT is used to manage the widely disaggregated sites associated with edge environments. It excels in multi-site colocation applications by providing operators a global view with the ability to drill into more granular site-level details as needed. Increasingly, tenants also expect similar levels of visibility into their IT and consider their own tailored digital experience as “table stakes” to be included in a colo’s offer.

Luckily, EcoStruxure IT is not only an operational tool. It also includes a permissions-based multi-tenant portal, allowing customers to view DCIM information specific to their own IT including rack elevations, capacity KPIs, and energy use down to the device level. A tenant portal immediately enhances a colocation provider’s product, especially as tenants need this data to quantify their total IT sustainability impact as part of their company’s “green IT” journey.

date center DCIM

Streamline reporting and billing

Colocation pricing models vary but typically are based on the space, power, and networking requirements of the tenant. Until recently, only very large tenants received a metered pricing contract that billed actual power consumption rather than a flat rate. As most major markets continue to struggle with expensive, volatile energy prices, colocation operators need to consider more granular power metering and billing to maintain both profitability and customer satisfaction.

Rack-level billing is now feasible for most colocation operators with the latest generation of rack power distribution units, an accessible solution to accurately report energy consumption with ±1% accuracy. Without the right monitoring software in place, however, rack-level metering can introduce complexity without business benefits.

EcoStruxure IT, with round-the-clock monitoring, not only enhances day-to-day operations but also becomes a scalable and simple reporting and billing engine. Its data center specific analytics capabilities coupled with open APIs means it easily becomes an integral part of existing data center workflow.

A new approach to colocation capacity management

Too few colocation providers take advantage of DCIM capabilities to tackle their biggest challenges. EcoStruxure IT can help transform colocation operations and better serve today’s most demanding customers. Interested in learning more? Request a free demo of EcoStruxure IT to see how it can optimize your data center operations.

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