It’s been said that, in times of crises, only the strong survive. They survive through a combination of increased flexibility, adaptability and accelerated innovation. As we all know, the world doesn’t stop when crises hit. If anything, it speeds up to address the new reality, and that’s exactly what happened when the COVID-19 pandemic hit—businesses were forced to adapt.
Two Years in Two Months
For anyone working within the world of digital transformation, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s declaration in a quarterly earnings report in late April that Microsoft has seen “two years’ worth of digital transformation in two months” is no surprise. And nowhere has this statement proven more true than within data centers. Data center traffic had already been growing at a rapid pace, and COVID-19 has exponentially accelerated it.
Given this trend, the need for data center operators to quickly develop and scale—as well as sustain—their networks has never been more critical.
New applications are driving today’s mobile, digital-first workforce to collaborate in new ways with business partners in every corner of the globe. But these technology applications rely on the assumption that there is a core office and IT infrastructure working behind them. COVID-19 has shattered that assumption. Working from home, entire staffs are wholly reliant on various digital tools to successfully communicate and collaborate.
For consumers, things like contactless payments and online grocery ordering have gone from emerging trends to the new normal almost overnight, highlighting the need for many companies to bolster their digital customer experience.
Accelerating Existing Challenges
The situation is a genuine stress test of companies’ digital infrastructures, and it’s shining a bright light on the limitations of on-premises data centers and cloud services. With current budget and staffing deficits, responding quickly and confidently to increased demands is challenging. Customers using cloud services are having to deal with the increased costs that come with increased bandwidth, not to mention increased latency, downtime and security concerns with public clouds.
Co-location Solutions Provide an Answer
Co-locations provide companies the flexibility they need going forward. Existing on-premises data centers can synchronize with co-located data centers to allow businesses to onboard workloads and applications faster, minimize costs through product innovation, and reduce risks through the highest quality standards – all particularly sensitive tasks as businesses continue to lockdown staff and so much more work happens remotely. But deploying a co-location solution is easier said than done. Paying attention to the physical layer supporting the logical layer can help get it up to speed quickly.
Physical infrastructure includes a lot of separate parts and pieces that need to work together as a whole to balance power needs, data requirements, space restraints and cooling capacity. Then there are the necessary considerations for risk redundancy, cooling optimization, ensuring connectivity, bandwidth and fault tolerance needed to leverage the latest technology.
Preconfigured infrastructure solutions based on proven reference architectures can remove much of the complexity to ensure consistently high service levels, whether on-premise or at a co-location facility. This facilitates consistent and predictable deployment of solutions that can easily scale globally across an entire enterprise, which simplifies IT and reduces total cost of ownership.
A well-designed physical layer simplifies data center management by improving visibility into resource capacities, making it easier to identify opportunities for operational efficiencies. As improvements are identified, they can be incorporated into the deployment of future designs, building a framework for continuous improvement throughout the data center life cycle.
Getting Ahead of the Game with Trusted Partners
When considering any data center infrastructure partnership, you need the depth and breadth of experience you can count on. Your partner should have a fully trained and vetted resource ecosystem that is not just up to speed, but ahead of the curve when it comes to converged infrastructure. They should be able to provide fully tested and validated preconfigured solutions designed with built-in DCIM capabilities and migration paths already in place to accommodate future scalability and higher data rates.
Instead of having to source numerous vendors for a series of global deployments, look to a partner that will bring in the right resources to meet your requirements and can act as the conduit to a full, future-proofed IT infrastructure.
Panduit’s unparalleled connectivity and physical infrastructure expertise can help you thrive in this new reality and prepare you for the future. Visit info.wesco.com/panduit-hub to learn more.
The opinions expressed in this piece are solely Panduit’s. They do not necessarily represent WESCO’s views.