How colocation managers can forge their own path to success

Analytics   |   
Published March 13, 2018   |   

As the business and commercial world expands to include more digital platforms and content, so will the data requirements and capabilities necessary to run the industry. It’s no surprise, then, that many businesses are focusing on deploying their own data center services and systems. Even in cases where those systems and platforms won’t be available externally, there may be a valid reason to have internal access within the company and among the workforce.
Of course, while the benefits of having your own data center and related hardware are vast, the costs are not always as manageable. This is not just in terms of building and deploying the necessary hardware, but also operating a data center, which takes massive amounts of energy, manpower time to develop and maintain.
Did you know, for instance, that in 2010 there were more than 8 million data centers operational worldwide, and they were responsible for up to 10 percent of global power consumption? Those are some hefty power consumption ratings. Imagine business owners trying to take on that burden themselves, via their own properties, systems and locations.
It would be a mess, that’s for sure.
That’s why colocation solutions have been introduced, and rightly so have also flourished in the current market. However, with an increase in popularity and deployment also comes a boost in innovation and evolved processes. More importantly, the technology and hardware involved improve as time goes on and providers perfect their setup or installation models.
It begs the question: How can existing location or acting colocation managers forge their own path to success through new technologies? What evolving or up-and-coming technologies should you focus on serving to your tenants?

Technologies to implement


IoT has grown considerably, placing a huge demand on modern data centers. Over the last five years, traffic to big data facilities that support IoT have grown fivefold, and is expected to surpass 1.6 zettabytes by 2018.
Things are happening so fast, that the old data center model from years past is no longer sufficient. Smart technology from the consumer and enterprise markets now taps into the cloud and remote systems to offload and access stored data. Colocation providers can aid by offering upgraded data solutions to customers, and support modern IoT strategies. Data aggregation, analyzation and the management of that data are incredibly important in IoT.

Big Data

Quite frankly, big data is integrated with almost all the other technologies discussed here. It’s more about the facilitation, collection and streaming of data than it is the servers and systems required to prop up such a platform.
For example, in retail, companies might use big data systems to report trend and web activity stats. Another system would analyze said data and pull out usable information that can be deployed as part of future marketing and business strategies. The data itself — massive in size — is the driving factor of this setup.
Of course, big data systems require cloud computing, remote storage hardware and solutions, and software-as-a-service platforms. Colocation comes into play, because the involved businesses and parties may want to leverage a big data system without housing the hardware in-house. Colocation allows them a more affordable, more manageable off-location solution.

Edge Computing

Edge computing does not replace cloud computing — in fact, it actually complements the technology. It refers to when a system or platform handles all the data processing on the edge of a network. This is opposed to remote processing power performed from the cloud or a central data location.
Generally, it is used in the industrial IoT space where devices in use capture, analyze and deploy streaming data. For example, consider a smart traffic light that analyzes data of traffic in the area and then reroutes based on collected info.
It is both speedier and more reliable than cloud computing, simply because all the analyzation and processing is handled locally.

Cloud Computing

Similar to edge computing, cloud computing is done remotely, at least regarding most of the processing and data storage. It’s all handled via a central data warehouse or data system designed for this very purpose.
Using satellite systems or other devices, you can tap into a cloud computing network to take advantage of all it has to offer. That includes software, hardware and processing power, stored data and much more.
When deploying a cloud or remote access system, it’s a cheaper option to go through a third party that handles cloud services. The customer — or business, if you will — does not have to buy, install and maintain the hardware related to operating such a system. The cloud provider does, and it’s all stored in the data warehouse.


Data center infrastructure management —or DCIM software as its often called — is a competitive and viable solution for colocation providers. It is the system, application and portal used to facilitate the relationship between a colocation provider and tenant. It handles billing as per-usage contracts, secure access and account portals, power reports, maintenance and system monitoring and much more.
Thanks to the tools and processes offered by this software, it can vastly improve efficiency, reduce costs and improve system reliability.

Design Architecture

Simply put, the design architecture of a data center is one of the most crucial aspects of any data system, cloud or local. All content is sourced and passes through the central IT architecture, which includes local machines and computers, remote platforms and systems, and remote data warehouses.
By deploying innovative design architecture that optimizes and speeds up the data facilitation, your business will boom. Colocation providers especially can benefit from improved systems, particularly when it comes to high bandwidth and high traffic setups.