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PSM Partners and CoreSite Colocation Provide a Foundation for Growth

CoreSite welcomes Greg Schrenker, Senior Account Executive at PSM Partners, as a guest blogger on Connect[ed]. PSM Partners is one of Chicago’s top IT consulting firms, offering managed IT services, consulting and IT talent recruiting.

Image of Greg Schrenker, IT Sales Consultant, sitting at a desk.
CoreSite welcomes Greg Schrenker, Senior Account Manager at PSM Partners, as a guest blogger on Connect[ed]. PSM Partners is one of Chicago’s top IT consulting firms, offering managed IT services, consulting and IT talent recruiting.

I’ll admit it, I love data centers and the technologies that make them tick. So, when a company contacts PSM, you’d think that the first thing I want to talk about are servers, switches, firewalls and virtualization, right?

Not at all. I start with foundational knowledge, in-house skills, processes, successes, failures and the way the company operates. Why? When I have a clear understanding of operations, key stakeholders, day-to-day issues and goals, I can then begin exploring the services that are right for their IT infrastructure.

And while the variables of each organization make it unique, there’s a constant element to their solution – a solid foundation on which to develop and evolve IT infrastructure is key to success.

Colocation data centers can be that foundation. They have become a platform for the multicloud infrastructure that is ubiquitous for businesses today, while also serving as hubs for interconnection to clouds, across an enterprise and to customers.

Colocation: The New On-Premises?

I know from talking with scores of IT leaders looking for managed IT services that their organization most likely falls into one of two buckets. I’ll also bet one of these rings a bell for you!

  1. IT modernization has been a goal for some time, but they are carrying years of technical debt and cultural baggage that makes transformation difficult.
  2. They have made digital transformation progress but are now course-correcting, so they can eliminate unanticipated expenses and the complexity that their cloud strategy brought and better determine the value of new technologies before adopting them.

I’ll unpack these and describe how the partnership between CoreSite and PSM can help each type of organization take the next step to becoming an agile digital business.

Companies frustrated by barriers to IT modernization often are “saturated.” They have an internal data center. Their IT team, typically a lean-and-mean unit of three or four techs with as many as 250 “customers” is fatigued by procurement cycles, managing servers and switches, upgrading cybersecurity applications and ensuring uptime. Their core business software solutions are not cloud-native and data is siloed; different departments might even be tracking operations on individual spreadsheets. Email, collaboration applications and identity management – essential functionality that can be easy to take for granted – require a lot of attention. Meanwhile, pressure is on to execute big-picture projects and plan for the future, which probably is what the team wants to do but doesn’t have the time to take on.

PSM will assume as many daily operational tasks as a client wants. We also can provide helpdesk support, backups and cybersecurity maintenance as well as network monitoring and performance improvements.

How does colocation fit into their solution? I’m back to the problem of IT being saturated. With colocation, PSM and CoreSite become an extension of your IT team that reaches into a CoreSite data center. Together, we can recommend and execute budget-conscious hardware acquisition. We’ll rack and stack equipment (properly, to ensure effective cooling), provide server maintenance, cybersecurity patches and cross connects – all the activities that saturate enterprise IT, but are the focus of data center operations professionals at CoreSite.

For larger companies, we assume the role of consultant, augmenting enterprise IT groups with resources culled from the 90+ engineers we have on staff. The depth of consulting can range from CIO services to risk management, compliance and even IT staffing. Considering a move to or from Azure or another cloud provider? Want to evaluate the best implementations of a critical application on a server to a new platform? We’ll assign a project team and an IT Director with experience specific to the initiative. Discovery and knowledge inform the IT roadmap and enable us to devise a long-term strategy that includes only what the client needs – while meeting executive budget expectations.

While the variables of each organization make it unique, there’s a constant element to their solution – a solid foundation on which to develop and evolve IT infrastructure is key to success. Colocation data centers can be that foundation.

By locating select workloads in a data center, larger enterprises get layers of security on their cabinet, blended network transit, redundant networking, uptime assurance and low-cost scalability, both physically and virtually. Because CoreSite has direct connections to cloud providers within their data centers, they can implement the most reliable, secure and lowest-cost cloud connection possible, primarily because of drastically reduced data egress costs. Direct connections perform better and cost less than using the internet to access services in Azure, AWS or other public clouds.

Reducing operational expenses as well as implementing new IT strategies that will improve infrastructure performance are foundational goals for organizations of all sizes. I’m sure you’ve been reading about repatriation. Colocation supports smarter workload placement for companies moving data storage and processing out of the cloud and those moving from an on-premises data center into a CoreSite data center.

It’s why, for most of PSM’s clients, colocation is almost always one element of the solutions we recommend. Who says the “premises” needs to be your building?

Why PSM Partners with CoreSite

I mentioned earlier that I can engage with colocation providers other than CoreSite. Yet, here I am, guest blogging for them. Here are a few reasons why.

I need to be confident that the data center provider I recommend delivers what I promise, because if they don’t, my relationship with the client is jeopardized. CoreSite has earned a reputation for reliability and lives up to that reputation every day.

Simplifying IT infrastructure is a core tenet for both companies – and invariably a goal for my clients. Making infrastructure easier to manage while enabling business growth is the unspoken promise in the examples I’ve given. Whether it’s outsourcing daily operational tasks, leveraging a software-define networking platform to automate wide area networking or identifying which of the hundreds of cloud services available are being used, the end goal is to rein in inherently complex technologies, even as companies get leaner.

Relationships are critical. Both companies are relationship-driven, customer focused. I made calls to colleagues and friends when the opportunity to work with CoreSite came up. Without exception, they said that everyone they knew and depended on was professional, committed, great at their job and easy to work with. In my line of business, relationships are everything. A big part of why PSM has stellar client retention is our focus on building and enhancing relationships. Like I said at the top of this post, I love technologies, but ultimately the biggest reason I’m successful as an account representative is that I put relationships ahead of everything else. That’s why I start with your knowledge base, people and processes, not your hardware, as the first step.

When you are ready to discuss your challenges – big or small – and exchange thoughts on how PSM and CoreSite can help simplify IT, cut infrastructure costs and set you up for growth, get in touch.

The CoreSite Team
Combining expertise, research and thought leadership to inform and advance hybrid IT.