InformationWeek recently released the results of its annual State of the Enterprise Data Center survey, which points to some interesting trends that present a solid case for prefabricated data center solutions. The survey was conducted with 217 data center managers and decision-makers at data centers of 1,000 square feet or larger in various sectors ranging from education, government, healthcare and financial services.
The survey results reveal some of the challenges data center operators and managers are facing to meet growing demands of maximum uptime and availability, despite budgetary limitations and changing business needs that often call for greater capacity. For example, when respondents were asked about their top requirements for application infrastructure, 67 percent of respondents selected reliability and availability. Another 39 percent viewed the flexibility to rapidly meet new business needs as a top requirement.
When we look at the full lifecycle of the data center, we can see how prefabricated solutions allow data center operators and managers to ensure maximum reliability and availability, while providing the flexibility to meet changing business needs.
For example, during the planning and design phases of an expansion or new build, data centers can take advantage of existing reference designs utilizing prefabricated building blocks for cooling, IT and power components. As proven, executable data center blueprints, reference designs allow these prefabricated components to be modified to meet specific facility needs and requirements.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of prefabricated data center modules is that they’re engineered, assembled and tested prior to being delivered onsite – providing the benefits of cost savings, increased reliability and availability. Commissioning time is sped up, which lessens disruption to business and ultimately decreases impact on revenue. Operators and managers are also assured that the components will work correctly and accurately meet specifications once the equipment is deployed. Additionally, prefabricated modules are repeatable and standardized, as opposed to unique, customized solutions that can be difficult to maintain and repair, leading to downtime.
The InformationWeek survey also asked if respondents expect the demand for data center resources to increase, decrease or remain the same over last year. Over half (54 percent) expect demand to increase somewhat, and another 19 percent expect demand to increase significantly. With prefabricated data center modules, their flexible, standardized nature make it easier to add additional components to increase capacity and redundancy when business needs change.
Additionally, given that 34 percent of respondents say that a constrained budget will have the greatest impact on data center operations in the coming year, the ability to accurately budget both time and upfront capital expenses in deploying prefabricated modules present a major advantage.
The InformationWeek survey shows us why operators and managers should consider prefabricated data center modules for expansions and new builds, given the benefits of flexibility and scalability, faster deployment and predictable performance.