Top 4 Traits MSPs Look For In A Data Center
Managed Service Providers (MSPs) are the trusted partners for the technical needs of most small and medium sized businesses. Businesses will frequently ask their MSP to recommend data centers to house their IT equipment. This article explores four of the most important traits MSPs look for in choosing and recommending a data center.
MSPs need 24×7 access to a secure rack, or cage, within a data center to access their client’s IT equipment. MSPs want access to a data center that is within a short drive of the MSP’s office, and/or a short drive from the nearest airport. A dedicated shipping and receiving area and client workroom is a big plus. MSPs can have equipment dropped shipped to the data center, stored until needed, and access a quiet area to configure the servers before racking them in the cabinet.
MSPs prefer carrier-neutral data centers with a wide choice of bandwidth providers. Some data centers like DC74 have carrier hotels with a dozen or more carriers. Having a carrier hotel in the data center gives the MSP choices in selecting one or more network carriers. In addition, data centers will frequently provide a BGP blend of multiple carriers for Internet access.
MSPs expect a data center environment to be much more reliable than the typical office environment. A common requirement is having 100% uptime on power and cooling. Redundant A and B-side infrastructure, from the transformer all the way to each rack of equipment, is a must. MSPs also look for multiple layer security infrastructure to ensure reliability. A data center with on-site staff, conducting regular walk-throughs, provides a higher comfort level than “lights-out” facilities, and is typically the choice of MSPs.
Speed and flexibility are required elements from a data center. MSP expect a “remote hands” service option from their data center for off-hours times, and when every second matters. Proactive monitoring is a requirement, not a luxury, and this is where a staffed data center provides great value to the MSP. The agility for a data center to make a trained technician available within minutes can often make all the difference.
In addition to the four traits listed above, MSPs also have to factor in scalability. MSPs do not want to be forced to move equipment as they grow. Selecting a data center partner that can easily scale with growth is the best way to go.
DC74 Data Centers has become the preferred partner of many of the MSPs in the region. Unlike other data center companies we do not compete with our MSP partners; we simply provide the access, network, reliability, and agility that MSPs demand. If you’re unhappy with your data center provider we should talk. Contact us here.