The remote working trend is reshaping how businesses use their office premises. Many large and medium-sized businesses have shrunk their floor space, knowing a significant percentage of the workforce will frequently be working away from the office for the foreseeable future.

But what if a business still has mission-critical, on-premises IT infrastructure, a server room, or rack space in its building? The need to maintain stable and secure platforms can quickly become a roadblock to down-sizing (or indeed upgrading) to a new office space. This can effectively tether a business to a building.

This is where hosting IT infrastructure with a trusted data centre partner can really prove its worth. At Datacom, we're increasingly hearing from customers who are looking into moving their equipment into our data centres to accommodate the new reality of work and take advantage of significant cost savings in the process. Housing equipment in a data centre can enable businesses to move teams easily between locations without a costly and difficult IT migration.

I regularly speak to IT managers representing businesses with more than half their staff predominantly working from home, or meeting directly with clients during the day. With fewer employees in the office, some leadership teams are considering a shift to a smaller building.

A recent customer was a business of around 100 people that was looking at migration. While less floor space would lead to significant cost savings, building a new server room to an appropriate standard for 10 racks of equipment would have cost upwards of NZ$1 million.

Faced with the need for an IT migration, and the significant build costs of a new server room, the business seized the opportunity to migrate its server equipment to one of  Datacom’s data centres. The business now takes advantage of our world-class facilities with a flexible consumption model where it pays only for what it uses. If the business changes in the future, its teams can move without having to worry about its IT moving with them.

Scaling up or down to meet needs

If that business expands rapidly in the next few years, it need only call us to order more rack space. Conversely, if it chooses to migrate some of its applications to public cloud platforms such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, or Google Cloud, our flexible contracts mean we can accommodate that from within our data centres, reducing the number of server racks the business uses in the process.

The operational benefit of flexibility, resilience, and added security when hosting IT equipment in a data centre is becoming increasingly obvious to businesses undertaking digital transformation. The cost benefits of doing so are also quite clear.

According to analyst group Gartner, businesses are increasingly “minimising their data centre footprint, leveraging external service providers, and getting out of the business of owning their own data centre infrastructure”.

“The ability to scale up and scale down as IT demands change enables businesses to better match infrastructure expense with the value they deliver and the revenue they generate,” adds Gartner.

Too often the true cost of maintaining on-premises infrastructure is obscured on a business' balance sheet. Likely, dedicated staff would be required to run server equipment. Hosting a server room, with its cooling, fire prevention, and security requirements, isn’t cheap. Generators and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) need significant investment and careful maintenance. Our data centres take all of this and roll it into a small monthly fee, based on what you actually need. The IT systems that power digital platforms and applications should no longer dictate which building is rented and where people work. 

At Datacom, we can provide the environment to host a business' digital assets, as well as software, storage, networking, and cloud connectivity, while taking care of the management, security, and support of the underlying data centre infrastructure so businesses can get on with pursuing objectives. 

Get in touch with us to find out how we can help your business get the most out of more flexible IT infrastructure that can evolve to meet your changing needs.

Andrew Green is the associate director (data centre business) for Datacom. With 15 years’ experience in the data centre industry, Andrew is responsible for all business activity for our network of six data centre sites across New Zealand and Australia.

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