When is it Time For a Business to Move Their Data Offsite?

data backup

data backupAt what point in a business’ growth does expanding their data to an off-site facility go from a good idea to an absolute necessity?

If you’re reading this, chances are very good that you’re leaning towards a move towards a colocation and you’re comparing your options.

To help those of you who are teetering on the fence, here are a few scenarios where you should definitely take the step forward. If you’re assessing the level of reliability you need from colocation, you can check out Upstack and ask them to craft a custom solution for you.

Your Business is Growing

Perhaps you’ve recently landed a major client or contract with a government agency that is going to put more demand on your current infrastructure, or create a higher need for backup systems.

Or perhaps you’ve merged with another company and your data assets are about to grow dramatically in size or complexity.

Your growth has you thinking about an imminent need to add a disaster recovery (DR) center. This way you can reduce downtime and minimize the cost or impact of an outage.

In either case, consider moving from having all your data on-site to a hybrid model of your own data centers, working with colocation data center providers, and public infrastructure as a service (IaaS).

This gives you the best of both worlds with access to your storage resources from a public recovery cloud, while you keep your secure data in a private cloud.

You’ve Experienced or Witnessed Major Downtime

It’s also very possible your company had an eye-opening experience, or had your eyes opened by someone else’s data outage.

The headlines are full of cautionary tales. For example, Wells Fargo experienced a large-scale outage due to a smoke detection that led to an automatic power shutdown. This caused the bank to extend Friday, Saturday and Sunday’s business hours for all 5,500 locations. This was also seen as a contributing factor for the bank’s first-ever CTO stepping down after less than 3 months.

As a whole, we’re seeing more network outages in all sectors over the last 3 years. According to The Uptime Institute, we have seen:

  • 27 outages in 2016
  • 57 outages in 2017
  • 78 outages in 2018

That adds up to 163 outages reported in traditional media or on social media in 3 years.

You Need a Higher Tier of Reliability

Reliability measures a system or component’s capacity to carry out its intended functions for a specific period of time.

Reliability also looks at the efficiency of a data center compared to the needs of a business. This is universally expressed through Uptime Institute’s Tier Classification System:

  • Tier I & Tier II: Organizations that don’t depend on real-time delivery of products for its revenue.
  • Tier III & IV: Organizations for whom every lost minute might mean a loss of thousands to millions in dollars.

Businesses evolve and you might find your organization graduating from one tier to the next, which means your data center needs will also evolve.

In any case, it’s always best to anticipate the need for a move to colocation well ahead of it becoming a necessity. Otherwise, relying on a single and on-site solution may lead to downtime and thousands of dollars.