Nigeria: Why do we need Data Centres? (I)

Nigeria: Why do we need Data Centres? (I)

Nigeria: Why do we need Data Centres? (I)

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The infrastructure that businesses depend on is extremely important to the success, the level of expenditure and the reputation of the organisation.

We need to come to the realisation that in this present economy we need to be creative, think out of the box and be innovative to create a sustainable business critical infrastructure that will give a reasonable return on investment. More importantly risks need to be mitigated and the organisations mission achieved.

The major fallout of the devaluation of our currency is that traditional capital expenditure does not give an acceptable return on investment.

A Data Centre that cost N1-3 billion when the exchange rate was N150 to $1 would be costing in the region of N5 – 15 billion today. This depends on the size and the level of the Data Centre. The level implying whether you are building to a Tier 3 or Tier 4 standard Data centre. Yet many organisations are talking about building their own Data Centre.

Our banking industry should be on a Tier 3 platform yet less than 10% of them are on a Tier 3 platform. This means, it is a given that they will suffer outages and unplanned downtime with an adverse impact on their operations, brand and finances.

Currently in Nigeria we have four Data centres that are Tier 3 certified by design and only one Data centre certified by construction.
Currently in Nigeria we have four Data centres that are Tier 3 certified by design and only one Data centre certified by construction.

It is very important to note that the more critical your operations, the more important the Data Centre standard you maintain. Any facility that houses servers should be a Tier 3 facility at a minimum. Maintaining a lower level, compromises your investment. The data is in danger of corruption, intrusion and most importantly permanent loss. The failure of a Data Centre becomes reputational and the brand of the landlord and the tenant organisation is severely impacted.

Unfortunately because we maintain a very low standard, we do not put ourselves under pressure when this failure occurs. Even our largest organisation will have a severe outage and there are no consequences or repercussions. In many other societies such occurrences lead to resignations, heavy financial loss and reputational damage.

To quote from the Uptime institute, “When you are putting millions of dollars into building a new data centre, you want to ensure that the facility is going to provide the level of IT performance and reliability that satisfies your business objective for 24 X 7 availability. At the same time, the project has to balance risk management, energy efficiency, and cost considerations, and ultimately deliver ROI.”

Currently in Nigeria we have four Data Centres that are Tier 3 certified by design and only one Data Centre certified by construction. We currently have no Data Centre that is certified Tier 3 by operations. We need to have more collaborations and strategic partnerships rather than the journey of everyone wanting to own their own.

Our banking industry should be on a Tier 3 platform yet less than 10% of them are on a Tier 3 platform. This means, it is a given that they will suffer outages and unplanned downtime with an adverse impact on their operations, brand and finances.

We need to appreciate that a server room is not a Data Centre. A server room cannot have a Tier 3 designation as it does not have the basic components to be a Data Centre. The implications are the risks will be high, the likelihood of disruptions will be higher and the danger and damage to data and equipment will also be high and many instances irreparable. Permanent data loss is not recoverable and the reputational cost are infinite.

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Remi Adejumo CTO at Comercio. Comercio is an IaaS company. We provide private, public and hybrid cloud. We also provide U-level Rack space.

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