4 Ways to Identify a Top Tier Colocation Data Center

Jul 28, 2020 | Colocation, Data Centers

With the majority of today’s enterprises pivoting into the digital world, there’s no question about the importance of the data center and its role in empowering next-generation customer experiences and business operation. While the question of colocation versus in-house data center is still much discussed, when the two options are weighed against an increasingly complex business environment, colocation provides several key benefits.

Colocation, as an option where hardware and IT equipment is still owned by the enterprise but housed in a secure third-party facility, adds peace of mind and expert support that can’t be matched. Offering 24x7x365 support, world-class infrastructure, and the ease that comes with outsourcing IT management and upkeep, enterprises get the uptime guarantees and protection against security breaches or other disruptions. At the same time, the responsibility of ongoing capital, staffing, and time that comes with maintaining an on-premises data center is shifted to the colocation provider.

Nevertheless, while many enterprises may have made their minds up about choosing colocation over any other data center approach, choosing the best facility and service partner is still crucial for success. Here are key areas to focus on when selecting a colocation partner:

1. Lead with Location First

The physical location of a data center is a good starting point in the search for colocation, as the place where the facility sits is the foundation of any service or capability that is delivered there. Choosing a geographically advantageous location means choosing one that’s close enough for easy access by internal teams if needed. Yet, if resilience from another facility is key, then keeping it at enough of a distance from any secondary locations is also important. On the other hand, if the data center is largely targeting customer service delivery, then having a facility close to the edge where the customer sits will lend enhanced speed and performance.

Another factor to consider in this vein is the location’s predisposition to or risk of outages. If the area is prone to storms or other natural disasters, then even the best provider can become victim to unanticipated downtime—which means your business will be too.

2. Ensure Thorough Security and Compliance At All Times

While some verticals require extremely high levels of data security to protect personal information (think healthcare or banking), any business across any sector should now be prioritizing data protection. This means finding a data center provider that offers robust physical security such as 24x7x365 manned security, gated entry, camera surveillance systems, man traps, biometric scanners, and more.

Beyond physical security, there are a number of compliance certifications that can give greater insight into the standards of business process control, security, and privacy for the IT housed inside any given facility. These include SSAE 18, HIPAA, ISO, and others, and they represent a third-party’s certification that the organization’s security, availability, processing integrity, operational effectiveness, and beyond are comprehensive and up to industry standard.

3. Look for A Carrier Neutral Approach

Network capabilities are becoming increasingly important in a data center selection as business requirements are becoming distributed and incorporating more partners, platforms, and services. A carrier-neutral data center allows connections to multiple internet providers, offering the freedom of choice (and often better deals) than a facility that locks customers into one provider. Increased competition within the same facility drives prices down, enables enhanced flexibility in case requirements change, and empowers greater redundancies.

Other networking benefits that should be top of mind are private fiber network access, cloud connectivity fabrics, or on-ramps and blended bandwidth, which offers the most efficient and reliable routing for network connectivity.

4. Don’t Forget the Importance of Good Service

All in all, there are a lot of options out there, and many offer a lot of the features discussed above. However, one factor that can truly set a provider apart from the rest is a dedicated level of hands-on service and a focus on the customer experience. This is what drives Data Foundry—high-touch customer service that doesn’t just care for IT equipment, it cares for enterprise teams and their personalized requirements.

Our Texas 2 facility, a purpose-built, dually-fed data center that provides wholesale and retail colocation for deployments of all sizes, is just one of the locations that not only offers all of the most important data center assets, but it goes beyond to deliver ongoing care and added amenities as an IT ally.

Take a tour of our new Texas 2 data center, click here. To learn more about Texas 2’s specifications and how they comprehensively meet evolving customer demands or to get a quote, please click here.