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February 28, 2017

How to Successfully Navigate Planned (and Unplanned) Growth

Every successful organization has a growth strategy. In his book Beyond the Core: Expand Your Market Without Abandoning Your Roots, Chris Zook writes, “No business that has failed to grow has ever been able to maintain excellence over time.” Growth is fundamental to success.

When it comes to your IT strategy, the term “growth” can bring entirely different implications. Yes, some fundamentals of any IT growth plan remain constant: labor, space, operating expenses and capital expenses. But your growth strategy should also account for future IT needs – like an increased need for connectivity and heightened data security concerns.

As companies react to a changing IT landscape, unplanned growth can result in your IT solution falling short when meeting the needs of your digital environment. Avoid devastating downtime, crippling security breaches or costly compliance violations with a strategic and IT-centric growth plan.

Access to adequate manpower and expertise, having room to grow and balancing operating vs capital expenses have the largest impact on meeting and maintaining critical IT needs. Let’s take a look at how your data center provider can help you build an effective IT growth strategy:

Manpower and Expertise

Data can play a powerful role in the overall success of your organization. As your in-house IT team evaluates how to best utilize data to streamline your business operations, transmit mission-critical information and interact with your key audiences, your IT management plan will expand and become more complex. It can be challenging to recruit, train and retain the personnel necessary to stay ahead of these changes and your existing in-house resources can quickly become overburdened.

Finding the right in-house vs out-source balance is important when building a sustainable strategy. While your organization’s leaders and IT professionals focus on making decisions that move your business forward, your data center partner can provide the specialized expertise necessary to design, deploy, maintain and monitor your environment without costly mistakes. To ensure your IT infrastructure scales seamlessly during planned growth transitions and unplanned spikes, you will need a dedicated team of connectivity, computing and hardware experts.

Room to Grow

When the need to expand rapidly arises, one of the most frustrating challenges an organization can encounter is delay. Often this delay can be linked to a lack of physical capacity and construction projects of any scale require a significant amount of time and money. When selecting a facility, it is important to select a space that has the capacity to expand within its existing footprint or very nearby.

Industry-leaders in data center design and construction are now pointing to the incremental growth philosophy as an approach that facilitates rapid scalability with a customer-centric design stage. Incremental growth is characterized by the ability to utilize a master plan and innovative construction strategies that not only keep pace with customer’s needs, but also deliver services that streamline the expansion process, improve Time to Value and offer a more customized solution. It involves investing in infrastructure-rich facilities that can be built out in stages.

OPEX vs CAPEX

The cost associated with rapidly expanding IT capabilities can be an insurmountable challenge for many organizations. Many business leaders, especially those that have invested heavily in legacy applications and on premise facilities, are reluctant to further increase their capital expenditures.

With a data center provider, an organization can utilize colocation and cloud services to meet their growing IT needs while continuing to utilize their existing infrastructure. With these solutions, you pay for what you need and don’t have to sink large investments into massive data center construction projects. Furthermore, these services are characterized as predicable and reoccurring operating expenses, creating a better OPEX vs CAPEX balance.

Scalable Connectivity

Your connections can quickly become overwhelmed by a significant growth in your business. This can lead to catastrophic failure where you lose access to mission-critical data or your connection slows to a crawl. Your connectivity solution should offer agile accessibility with high-bandwidth capacity and an Anti-DDoS security protocol to protect your environment from being overwhelmed by malicious traffic.

In addition to supporting your high-performance applications, your connectivity solution should also be able to scale up and down as your bandwidth needs change. You don’t need to pay for a level of bandwidth that exceeds your regular usage and you don’t want to experience a failure in the event of unplanned growth.

Comprehensive Security

The math is simple. The larger your IT footprint, the more vulnerabilities you have. Organized cybercriminal groups are constantly looking to exploit any security weaknesses and if you experience unplanned growth, the risk of gaps in security increases dramatically. Furthermore, the costs associated with having 24x7x365 in-house monitoring are often prohibitive and difficult to manage.

Partner with a data center provider that is committed to state-of-the-art physical and logical security. It is challenging to utilize best-of-breed security technologies in an existing, on premise environment that may not have been purpose-built to serve as a data center. However, working with a data center provider gives you access to fully-integrated, fully-monitored support that relies on security barriers like active video monitoring, biometric access control, finger print scans, data encryption, security intelligence and intrusion detection.

With a fully-integrated services platform comprised of a variety of industry-leading products and solutions, QTS offers IT professionals the ability to streamline their IT management, scale rapidly and be prepared to operate securely and effectively in the rapidly evolving world of data. We’re offering comprehensive strategies to help you innovate for where IT is going, contact us today to build your IT growth strategy. 

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