Supporting evidence-based procurement.
The data centre marketplace is crowded with new and emerging technologies claiming to offer a panacea for some of the principal challenges faced by the industry, namely the need to improve efficiency, and to run more powerful servers at a time when energy costs are spiralling.
Although manufacturers may claim that their products improve performance and / or efficiency and promise reductions in OpEx spending, there is little objective data to confirm how these technologies might perform under the specific conditions for which they are required, whether they can be integrated with legacy equipment, or their compatibility with hardware and software. Given the increases in manufacturing costs that are being passed on to the end user, clients have never been more aware of the potential impact of choosing the wrong products, particularly when these may be unproven.
We have recognised that there is a market for conducting independent research that will help mitigate these risks and have been working with clients to develop Proof of Concept studies to assess new technologies without commitment to a significant CapEx spend. Using demonstration equipment provided by trusted partners and suppliers, POCs involve the design and implementation of small scale test environments which mirror the conditions required by the client. These can facilitate performance evaluation, assess compatibility of different hardware and software applications, and identify whether – and how – new and legacy technology might be integrated. Equipped with robust empirical data that is specific to the business conditions defined by the client, this can enable them to identify whether the technologies under consideration can be scaled up to meet their business requirements.