Assessing the Risks of Building a Data Center in the United States

Assessing the Risks of Building a Data Center in the United States

There’s many factors driving an increased demand for data centers. With technology developments, more and more companies are seeking ways to better interact with their consumers as well as offer a broader array of services.

As a result, many companies are seeking ways to expand their data center capacity. And that means assessing the risks that come along with expansions.

According to a recent report, building a data center in the United States is slightly riskier than it was just several years ago. Previously, the country was known globally as the least risky among all countries for building a data center.

Cushman & Wakefield’s Data Center Risk Index now puts the United States behind Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, Finland and Sweden. Canada, Singapore, South Korea and the U.K. were next on the list, with the U.S. falling into the 10th slot. The index, which ranks 37 countries, is based on 10 factors, including GDP per capita, energy security, ease of doing business, available network bandwidth, and the likelihood of natural disasters.

The United States ranked third in electricity costs, fifth in ease of doing business, 15th in available network bandwidth, and 36th in corporate tax environment.

Assess and manage risk

For companies or agencies considering expanding data center capacity, the options include building out their own space and data colocation centers. Determining investment and risk are essential in building a facility’s design and the associated maintenance. Some factors include:

Location. Selecting a location requires understanding risks associated with the geography of the area and the building — essential to determining the impact of potential downtime. Other associated factors include climate, natural disasters, electricity rates and regulations.

Identifying IT needs. Determining IT needs for the short-term and long-term is essential in building out the design and capacity of the data center. IT professionals also need to assess which transactions will be housed in the new space.

Design. After the IT needs are assessed, the data center builders can focus on the design of the facility, including innovations that can maximize efficiencies while minimizing overall costs.

Identifying IT needs. Determining IT needs for the short-term and long-term is essential in building out the design and capacity of the data center. IT professionals also need to assess which transactions will be housed in the new space.

About Tony Johnson

Innovative helps you balance your business requirements, service levels, staff and infrastructure to make your IT as effective as possible. Tony Johnson is Vice President of Operations at Innovative and has been helping clients optimize their IT spend and operations since 1983.

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