Data Center Consolidation in the Federal Government
Looking beyond the technology
Currently there are more than 2,000 data centers in the Federal government, and the administration is directing agencies to consolidate and restructure their data centers in an effort to reduce costs and improve IT security – and perhaps take a first step toward cloud-based computing.
It is critical, though, that data center sprawl be thought of as a business challenge – not simply a technology challenge. To achieve substantial benefits, Deloitte recommends that agencies consider a shared-services model of IT organization in addition to consolidating their data centers. Solving the business problem will help reduce costs and energy consumption, increase efficiency, and improve the government's IT security and compliance profile. Moving to a shared-services model will also provide greater agility in provisioning new services.
Benefits of data center consolidation include:
- Improved efficiency – Data center consolidation is the first, and most critical, step toward realizing an efficient data center environment. It offers a prime opportunity to change the current operational model and improve service levels. In addition, these efforts inherently improve data center security and information assurance through standardization of processes and a better ability to manage fewer centralized facilities than distributed environments.
- Reduced costs – The effectiveness of data center consolidation as a cost-reduction strategy is based on economies of scale experienced by larger data centers. Studies show that the total operating cost per equivalent unit of computing power is significantly lower when maintaining a few large enterprise data centers than when maintaining many more medium-to-small data centers.
To learn more about data center consolidation in the Federal government – including trends, critical success factors, and potential quick wins – please download the PDF attachment below.