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State Of UK Data Centres Could Threaten Growth

Eric is a veteran British tech journalist, currently editing ChannelBiz for NetMediaEurope. With expertise in security, the channel, and Britain’s startup culture, through his TechBritannia initiative

UK data centres must improve if the country is to remain a financial powerhouse, Quocirca warns

The majority of organisations are having trouble ensuring that existing data centre facilities meet the changing needs of theirbusinesses, analysts at Quocirca report.

The Next Generation Datacentres Index rates countries on how well datacentre facilities are set up to support the organisations dependent on them. The scale runs from o to 10, where 10 represents a perfectly attuned data centre.

UK’s Average Performance

The best overall performances for organisations in the nine regions were those based in Germany and Switzerland, whose results were combined as the DCH region, with a score of 6.09. Worst was the Middle East at 4.41 with the UK recording an index just marginally better than the average of 5.28 behind DCH, Nordics, USA and Benelux in decending order. France came in as below average.

Bob Tarzey and Clive Longbottom, the report’s authors, commented: “For France and the UK, this should be seen as very worrying – as two major powerhouses of the world economy, lagging behind in how well IT is positioned to support organisations could result in these two regions slipping down the economic rankings.”

They also said that the two countries could feel even greater pressure if nations that have been forced into deep austerity measures, such as Greece and Ireland, chose to invest in updating their datacentres to provide longer term savings overall.

The research showed that the best-performing regions were those that have a full systems management capability in place. They generally showed greater systems availability, better visibility of existing workload performance, improved capability to plan for future workloads and higher utilisation levels of existing IT assets.

This prompted Quocirca to recommend that a company’s annual report should also include a corporate social responsibility (CSR) statement that is both measurable and monitorable. The organisation should also report on how this compares with competitors and a move to a sustainable data centre should be seen as a core target  and not just “nice to have”.

The report, undertaken on behalf of Oracle, concludes that IT is at a tipping point. “Far too many organisations seem to be constrained by their IT capabilities, rather than seeing them as enabling the business. Having to fire-fight problems caused by the organic growth of IT assets, siloed applications and data, disparate and discrete management systems, lack of visibility over the IT estate and lack of integration into the organisation’s strategic decision making process is not where any organisation should want to be,” the authors said.