As companies plan their return to the office after months away due to the COVID-19 shutdown, many are considering moving their IT systems to a local Colocation facility. They want to allocate as much space as possible in their newly re-configured offices for their employees. If they can free up a room (or even a closet) where the company’s IT systems were housed, this will provide more space for safe social distancing. Many office managers are looking for a suitable home for their IT systems and thus are giving serious consideration to Colocation.

Colocation services are where a company’s IT systems are housed at a purpose-built data center. These facilities are specifically designed to provide a safe and secure environment for servers and related equipment. Redundant power, redundant air conditioning systems and redundant internet circuits along with security systems are all specifically designed to deliver high availability and safety for critical IT systems in a cost-effective manner.

Planning an office redesign to maximize employee space and safety is a challenge due to all the variables that must be considered. If a decision is made to free up space via IT system colocation, what is a realistic estimate of the time it will take for the systems to be up and running at the colocation facility?

Once a client’s unique space, power, and internet bandwidth requirements have been specified a proposal for the colocation services will be provided. The colocation agreement is formalized via a Master Services Agreement (MSA) and a Statement of Work (SOW). Once these documents have been executed the installation can be scheduled. At CAPS, the time required from requirements specification until installation can be as little as a week but typically ranges from two to four weeks.

Installation usually goes very quickly once all systems have been received at the colocation data center. Prior to the installation date, power circuits, PDU’s, and cross connects will be installed and the cabinet or cabinets for the client’s systems will be readied. Firewalls will be configured as necessary. The client will receive initial training regarding the safety and security at the data center and will be provided documentation with procedures to follow and key contacts. Employees from the client organization will be provided security passes to enter the data center. Often, CAPS’ system engineers will assist the client during the installation by providing carts to move equipment and helping resolve any outstanding issues.

Internet bandwidth provisioning can be virtually instantaneous as CAPS has multiple high bandwidth circuits from multiple carriers. This eliminates one of the biggest possible delays to a cut-over. Clients ordering internet circuits directly from a carrier often wait months for an installation. In addition, CAPS is able to provide automatic failover to one of its alternate carriers in case the primary internet circuit becomes non-operational.

Though the actual time it takes to redeploy IT systems to CAPS’ data center will vary depending on a client’s unique requirements, it is safe to say most clients experience elapsed time from start to finish in weeks not months. Please contact CAPS to let us know your requirements and we will be happy to provide you with a schedule you can plan on.