International Commercial Real Estate Company
Independent Technical Advisory
Providing an assessment of the organisation’s current Data Centre infrastructure, governance, and operations to provide insight as to whether their future IT strategy is supported effectively by the existing underlying infrastructure.
The client, an International Commercial Real Estate Company, was looking to review its existing Data Centre colocation contracts which were held with two different providers that operated facilities located in the UK and Europe. There was also a desire to review the overall network connectivity to determine whether the existing connections were appropriate and competitive on price.
PTS was engaged to perform the role of Independent Technical Advisor to investigate whether cost savings and improvements to services and SLAs could be realised based on the current configuration.
Key considerations applicable to the client would be whether there was an opportunity to optimise the existing networks in place, along with reducing the server footprints. Alternatively, was there instead a benefit for the client to move its colocation services to entirely new Data Centre facilities.
All this information would be used by the client to validate that its current IT strategy was supported effectively by the underlying network and infrastructure architecture. The information obtained during the PTS engagement, along with comments around any advantages and disadvantages, was all required for input into the client’s business case.
PTS engaged with the client in a phased approach. During the initial element of the engagement, PTS undertook site visits in the UK and Europe to physically assess each facility, whilst also examining in detail the accompanying Data Centre contracts from both colocation providers. This contract review assessed the current end dates, details of the SLAs being offered, and whether the existing pricing was competitive. Provisions around early exit from the agreements were also analysed. PTS additionally evaluated whether the existing hosting infrastructure was suitable for the client to continue supporting its business over the next three years, and if not, recommended what adjustments or alternate options of hosting service was needed. As part of this activity, a high-level market review of alternative hosting facilities and associated pricing was reviewed so that any potential options for rehosting were fully quantified.
PTS investigated the network topology, the equipment in use, how it had been configured, along with the connectivity provided by the existing network providers to assess whether it all met existing and future requirements. PTS identified whether moves and upgrades were required to provide a suitable network service over the next three years, whilst also making recommendations based on its findings.
The client’s own IT infrastructure, in conjunction with its critical Services and Applications, were all assessed to determine, for the organisation’s scale and size, that it was appropriately specified and sized and that the platform and structures implemented were consistent. A review of the existing Disaster Recovery (DR) arrangements and whether there would be any potential impact on moving to an alternative facility was also reviewed.
Taking all the information discovered, PTS performed a Gap Analysis to determine the variation between the current state and the objective of providing stable services for the next three years with appropriate IT infrastructure, hosting environments, and network connectivity. Considering the age of the IT infrastructure, along with any risks posed by the existing service contracts, PTS highlighted options for service improvement and commentary around the Data Network capability and high-level DR/Service Continuity requirements.
PTS provided the client with a single written report that clearly discussed in detail, each of the Data Centre facilities, the network connectivity, and the IT systems and platforms in use by the client. Conclusions and recommendations were documented, in conjunction with three distinct options that allowed the client to easily evaluate what type of approach they wanted to take moving forward.
The information that PTS documented within the report formed a critical element of the ongoing client review activity. This allowed the client to further discuss with its key project stakeholders to determine the most favoured approach to move forward with.
The outputs of the PTS engagement provided the client with:
- A clear and detailed assessment of its existing IT services
- A list of high-level identified risks
- Areas for improvement based on Industry Best Practice and PTS experience
- An indicative overview of alternative colocation and connectivity services in the marketplace
- List of benefits aligned to any potential changes
- High-level indication of any financial impact or potential cost savings
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