Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Why is data centre costs going up?

It's old news that data centre costs are going up and that providers are struggling to reign in the costs of providing such services. They are trying all kinds of technology from redesigning the airflow of the data centre, to virtualisation that optimises the server utilisation.

This does mitigate the problem but personally, I think the root cause of the problem is that people in the IT line has totally no control if systems should be implemented. Tell me how often is it do you see in an organisation where the users went ahead to do up a system without any inputs from the IT folks, and leaving the IT folks to pick up the pieces when things screw up? Common?

With all the focus on time-to-market, few realised that with all the focus on the speed, they forget that whatever that they are doing may be detrimental to the organisation in the long run. Let's give a very simple example. Let's say you have a department A in the division creating an application so that they will be able to publish the content that they have to their customers quickly, not knowing that the content that they are having may not be complete, and that there is another department B that is in-charge of doing it through another system which they have no knowledge of. Result? Confusion to your customers and a drop in customer satisfaction.

The IT departments do have a unique role in any organisation because they are the ones who will have a unique view of all the systems in the organisation, and how it communicates and interacts with each other. In technical terms, it's called enterprise architecture. If you do not give the appropriate authority to the IT departments, what you will end up with will most probably be multiple silo application systems that do not talk to one another and most probably duplicate certain functions, causing confusion to the staff and customers.

With centralised control of all application systems in the organisation, the number of application systems will be more streamlined and thus reducing your IT operational costs because you will have lesser servers to maintain, which will reduce your data centre costs.

However, one caveat though. This is assuming you have an awesome IT department. Quality is never cheap.

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