Maybe it goes without saying but Data Center locations are not always aligned with ideal corporate locations. This comes into play as IT groups make decisions on whether to host their own infrastructure or outsource it to others (or to the cloud).
Data Center locations involve a level of decision making beyond those for corporate locations. Some critical decisions include:
- Will there be data center redundancy nationally or globally?
- Will IT staff beyond data center support be located on-premise?
- Should any part of the data center infrastructure be co-located with other corporate groups?
- Are data center requirements growing or shrinking (note that this is probably a bit of a trick question as demand for services may be growing while the equipment needed to meet demand shrinks)?
- How much flexibility is needed in the data center decision (how possible is it that this decision will be wrong and need to be fixed in the next 5 years)?
Depending on the answers to these questions the corporate CRE group may be well positioned to help the data center team better understand how to look at possible scenarios. This is exactly the decision process that has been occurring around retail, call center, back office and even headquarter locations over the past 10 years. Data centers are simply catching up.
As the technology and infrastructure changes dramatically the needs of data center decisions are also changing dramatically. A decision today has an increasing probability of not meeting future needs.