Data centres: 8 reasons to turn to colocation
In the past, colocation was seen simply as a cost-effective alternative to on-site investment. It offered the robustness of an on-site infrastructure without the time constraints and financial commitments associated with expanding or building a dedicated facility. But times have changed. Today, colocation is much more than a simple alternative: it’s become an end in itself for many IT teams. And there are many advantages.
Data centre colocation: back to basics
Data centre colocation involves renting physical space in a third-party data centre to install your own servers, storage equipment and other network devices. This approach enables companies to benefit from state-of-the-art infrastructure without having to invest in the construction and maintenance of their own data centre. It can be considered as a sort of hotel for servers. Just as a hotel provides its guests with different rooms and services, a colocation centre offers various options in terms of space, electrical power and connectivity. Companies can choose a package that best suits their specific needs.
Data centre colocation offers a unique combination of flexibility and robustness. It allows companies to concentrate on their core business by delegating infrastructure management to experts. It also provides access to cutting-edge resources and technologies that would otherwise be costly and complex to implement.
Eight key advantages of colocation
Data centre colocation is now a fully-fledged strategy for businesses looking for flexibility, security and efficiency. Here’s proof, in 8 points.
No. 1: reliability for a foolproof infrastructure
A server breakdown or service interruption can have disastrous consequences for a business, ranging from loss of revenue to damage to its reputation. In this context, data centre colocation stands out for its exceptional robustness and reliability. Redundant cooling systems, uninterrupted power supply, data back-ups and recovery plans, 24/7 monitoring – everything is done to guarantee a consistently high level of operation.
No. 2: performance and an environment optimised for excellence
The performance of electronic equipment is closely linked to thermal management. Colocation centres offer advanced cooling systems that maintain the ideal temperature enabling servers to function properly. Performance isn’t just a question of computing power; it also depends on connection speed. Colocation centres offer high-speed connections, guaranteeing minimal latency.
No. 3: physical security that reduces risks
Protecting the premises of your own data centre can be costly, which means that the physical security of the data centre should be part of the added value provided by colocation. Consider the complex security systems, the 24/7 presence of surveillance professionals and the state-of-the-art video surveillance systems as relevant indicators of the level of security offered by your colocation provider. In addition to managing access to the site, this also means having the appropriate protocols in place for anyone approaching your cage or room.
No. 4: expertise at your fingertips
Maintenance is an often-overlooked aspect of IT infrastructure management, at least until a problem arises. In a colocation centre, servers and network equipment are maintained by experts. They’re able to quickly solve any technical problem. Their expertise ensures not only that the equipment works properly, but also that servers and other devices last longer. What’s more, maintenance in a colocation centre is not just reactive; it’s also proactive. This means that maintenance teams constantly monitor the systems to detect any anomalies before they become major problems. This proactive approach avoids downtime and ensures optimum performance. The expertise found in colocation data centres is also more profitable in the long term. Companies don’t need to hire and train their own maintenance staff, which reduces operational costs. In addition, the expertise of maintenance teams helps to avoid costly mistakes and extend the life of equipment.
No. 5: possibilities for infinite (or almost infinite) scalability
Scalability is an essential criterion when choosing a colocation solution. Business needs are evolving rapidly, and colocation providers offer a wide range of space volume options. Whether you need a single cage or several dedicated rooms, colocation centres can accommodate these needs in a flexible environment. Growth isn’t limited to expansion within a single centre. Colocation providers often offer the possibility of expansion across several sites and regions. This geographical flexibility means that IT teams can adapt their deployment without any major obstacles. Providers with land reserves are particularly well positioned to offer this flexibility, especially in fast-growing markets.
No. 6: a sustainable commitment
In today’s climate, where environmental awareness has become a priority, a good colocation provider can be an active partner in your sustainability approach. This involves the very design of the facilities (optimising electricity consumption, regulating air-conditioning, etc.). To guarantee a serious commitment to sustainability, a data centre should comply with strict environmental standards. This includes managing the facilities in accordance with ISO 14001 and 50001, which are benchmarks for environmental management and energy consumption. PUE monitoring in buildings should also comply with the ISO/IEC 30134-2 standard. Lastly, sustainable practices need to be integrated throughout the supply chain and future legislation and good environmental practices should be anticipated. This requires the ongoing assessment and management of your environmental impact, as well as accurate reporting to evaluate progress.
No. 7: better risk management
The first line of defence in risk management is the physical security of the facilities. Colocation centres are often equipped with robust security measures, such as surveillance cameras, biometric access controls, and mantraps. These measures are supplemented by state-of-the-art digital security, including advanced firewalls and intrusion detection systems. Risk management also involves compliance with the current regulations. Colocation centres undergo regular audits to ensure they comply with industry standards, whether in terms of data protection or physical security. Risk management in colocation is a serious matter that encompasses several aspects, ranging from physical security to regulatory compliance. With robust security measures, redundant systems and well-designed contingency plans, colocation centres provide an environment where businesses can operate with complete confidence, minimising risk and maximising availability.
No. 8: monitoring to manage your infrastructure
Modern colocation centres offer tools and features that not only simplify the management of your infrastructure, but also make it smarter and more responsive. A data centre should also offer you a complete view of various aspects of your infrastructure, ranging from temperature and power supply to servers, storage and networking. This transparency enables problems to be identified and resolved in real time, which is crucial for maintaining optimum performance. Another key benefit is the ability to upgrade your infrastructure on demand. This means your infrastructure can evolve as your business needs change, giving you a competitive edge in the marketplace.
At the same time, automation is revolutionising the way infrastructure is managed. Colocation centres can automate interconnections between different clouds and applications. This enables multi-cloud environments to be managed in a more stable and intelligent manner without compromising your performance and security priorities.
Data centre colocation is no longer just another option for managing IT infrastructure; it’s become an essential strategy for businesses looking to position themselves competitively in an increasingly digitised world. Beyond the immediate benefits in terms of cost, performance and security, colocation opens up opportunities for innovation and digital transformation. In the age of the Internet of Things, 5G and artificial intelligence, the need for data processing and storage will continue to grow exponentially. Storing your data and applications in colocation helps you better anticipate the future.