Back in the good old days of on-premise IT infrastructure, the life of IT professionals was much simpler. There were fewer systems to manage, applications to configure, and endpoints to secure.
How times have changed. Nearly 95% of today’s enterprises rely on cloud infrastructure as a core element of their business. Almost 85% employ a multi-cloud or hybrid cloud strategy and use an average of approximately five cloud platforms at a given time.
Core infrastructure is the glue that holds a business strategy together. And as more organizations worldwide undertake digital transformation initiatives, their need for reliable technology solutions providers increases exponentially.
But not all partners and providers are created equal. The most successful ones continue to adapt to the changing demands of the global economy and specifically to their clients’ present and future business needs. This is especially true of data center solutions providers, who are charged with delivering the scalable infrastructure, business agility and security their customers need to remain competitive and relevant in an evolving global economy.
To meet customers’ present and future challenges of competing in the Digital Age, CoreSite has increased its focus on operational excellence and continuous improvement.
Operational excellence program explained
Renowned poet Dr. Maya Angelou once said to “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.”
For nearly two decades CoreSite has lived by a strikingly similar philosophy, continually re-evaluating our operations and strategies in search of more effective ways to deliver world-class custom solutions for customers of all shapes and sizes.
We’ve standardized those efforts across the entire organization by formalizing an Operational Excellence program centered around:
But a goal without a plan is just a wish. Which is why CoreSite has deployed a three-pronged strategy to operational excellence predicated on significant and strategic investments in technology, our people and a robust training curriculum.
Advanced technologies for complex business challenges
Yesterday’s infrastructure wasn’t built to support today’s business demands. The era of the data-driven enterprises — enabled by the emergence of hybrid cloud environments and other cloud-first architecture — is in full swing. To compete, organizations need to execute digital transactions at the edge and bring core processes physically closer to the end user with the help of their data center partner.
CoreSite boasts 21 operational data centers in eight strategic markets to turn those wish list capabilities into reality. New CoreSite facilities are purpose-built with all the features and capacity required of digital-first enterprises, while operational excellence guidelines permit older buildings from running at the same peak efficiency with:
More importantly, they’re supported by a number of work and monitoring technologies designed to track performance information and maintenance data. CoreSite leverages that data to improve resource utilization and overall operating efficiency across each data center, while enabling team members to effortlessly maintain, update and upgrade schedules and proactively identify potential areas of concern to keep operations running smoothly and at peak performance.
Good people do great things
VA3 Operations Team
Beyond investing in the latest and greatest technology, CoreSite’s biggest commitment is to recruiting, hiring, and nurturing the right personnel to deliver exceptional customer experience and value. A core tenet of this prong is to find individuals with advanced problem solving skills, who are detail-oriented, diligent in their work and can adapt to rapidly changing environments on a daily basis.
We scour a cross-section of the workforce to recruit the best in both construction and operations talent. Each candidate — whether a talented engineer who excels at drawing up blueprints or a military veteran with a knack for following strict protocols while also adapting on-the-fly to occasional emergencies — understands inherently the principles of both data center design and how to read blueprints, as well as the actual steps in operating each aspect of the facility. Diverse backgrounds and experiences create a culture of innovation, collaboration and accountability that results in a team of performance-oriented professionals who can be counted on to do the right thing for our customers, the right way, at exactly the right time.
Training and development
Virginia Operations Team
Finding great talent is but one challenge in a highly competitive industry like networking and data center operations and services. Nurturing that talent — properly on-boarding, training and retaining — is a far greater obstacle and one CoreSite has addressed by mimicking the military model, taking all operations employees through sequential training to full qualification.
CoreSite has devised a rigorous training and development curriculum that blends on-site and online learning and demands employees successfully complete a series of modules and trainings. They have to pass each module to earn their way into a fully qualified and CoreSite credentialed data center employee and in the course of their training learn everything from the essentials of network design to the maintenance and upgrade of cooling systems, cabling, and other essential components.
They also participate in simulated drills of real-world crises, learning to respond appropriately to an array of unexpected events or even on-site emergencies. This intensive, sequential training systematically and methodically builds expertise and accountability that ultimately services data center customers better by ensuring systems, configurations and equipment are deployed and working flawlessly at all times.
Great results... and more to come
As organizations continue to invest in cloud-enabled infrastructure to satisfy the evolving demands on their business, they’ll need the support and guidance of a trusted data center partner.
CoreSite’s commitment to excellence — and methodical approach to sustaining it — provides customers a central foundation for delivering the streamlined, holistic IT environment they need to thrive in a global business culture that demands always-on availability and rapid go-to-market strategies.
The extreme emphasis on operational excellence helped CoreSite exceed its 2018 availability goals, achieving seven 9s uptime across its entire portfolio and besting even the loftiest industry availability standards. CoreSite also delivered an approximate 7% improvement in 2018 in its Power Utilization Effectiveness compared with 2017, enabled by strategic infrastructure investments and the performance-first efforts of its staff.
Businesses have come to expect CoreSite’s white-glove service, expert guidance, and world-class technology. Our continued focus on Operational Excellence will continue to raise the industry bar.
Read more about CoreSite’s preeminent customer service as experienced by Dstillery.
SVP, Data Center Operations
Anthony Hatzenbuehler, SVP of Data Center Operations, is responsible for onsite data center operations activities, client services and the Operations Support Center (OSC).Read more from this author