What are the top ten data center best practices?

1. “Consult”. Get an independent data center consultant do engineer and design for you. If you had the capability to do it yourself you wouldn’t be reading this article right now. Furthermore, even if you think you have the capacity for engineering and designing your site and infrastructure, for many reasons you shouldn’t: a) You need to remain focused in “operating your data center” not designing it. They are two different world and your involved in design will surely slash your enthusiasm and efficiency in operation. b) You or your department should not take sole responsibility for the liabilities that might arise from and end-to-end data center design exercise and an ultimate site that results from it. c) No matter how hard you try, your skills, know-how, awareness of varied trends and design principles, as well as experience cannot match professionals who are designing data centers day in, day out. d) It always makes sense to get a second opinion.

2. “Design”. Ensure that you data center design is “detail design” not just conceptual.

3. “Validate”. Get your data center design audited.

4. “Select”. Think out of the box when selecting technologies. You don’t necessarily have to with the top 3 UPS or precision cooling brands. There are many good solutions out there with enhanced features, better prices, and higher flexibility from the providing vendor.

5. “Specify”. Develop complete quantified specifications for every component that goes into your data center. Never put the operability and availability of your data center at the mercy of a contractor.

6. “Supervise”. Utilize the skill sets of professional project managers who can take your project for point A and deliver it at point C with efficiency, effectiveness, while meeting all necessary deadlines and avoiding redundant costs.

7. “Test”. Always conduct full testing and commissioning of your facilities before handover and taking the site live.

8.“Audit”. Audit your data center build, to ensure that the actual buildup matches the design parameters and targeted tier.

9. “Train”. Get yourself, your staff and active members of your organization who have anything to do with the data center trained and certified. Data center is a science, it’s an emerging industry by itself and requires handful of skills and knowledge, which initiates by training and certification programs.

10.“Maintain”. It is not enough to build a state-of-the-art data center and leave it at that. A Tier IV data center is not a Tier IV data center without Tier IV grade maintain practices. The higher the tier the more sophisticated and delicate the maintenance and operational processes become. Hence planning for effective maintenance is a task that needs to be planned at the commencement of the project as advised by your consultants.