Use key performance indicators to ensure the success of your data center consolidation and optimization project

Normally, relocating or consolidating, or even optimizing your data center is a massive task. There is a significant risk that the processes will drag on for years to come, and what is even more disturbing is the fact that the task will never finish, leaving you with more data centers than you started with. One way of avoiding this is to implement fit-for-purpose key performance indicators (KPIs) that support your business case, focusing on measuring activities and progress that will eventually allow you to turn off the switches in the old data centers.
I recommend using a few simple KPIs to achieve this, breaking them down into the following easy-to-understand categories:
  • Business case
  • Target architecture fulfillment
  • Progress
  • Quality
Below, I have stated a few examples for your benefit — but based on my experience, I strongly recommend using only a few KPIs per project. This might seem somewhat strange as you’d surely think that you will have better control if you use multiple KPIs to ensure the success of a project.
However, based on my experience, simplicity and clarity should be your focus. Having too many KPIs will eventually force you to start prioritizing between KPIs, which ultimately might lead to uncertainties and lack of clarity.
Business case
  • Business case fulfillment – Percentage of savings or revenue identified in the business case that has been realized, for example, increasing revenue or decreasing the line budget for IT production spend.
Target architecture fulfillment
  • Virtualization
  • Virtualization rate (%)

    • Number of virtual servers vs. number of physical servers per platform (Windows and Unix dialects)’
  • Standardization

    • Standardization of IT infrastructure services (%)
    • Reduction of servers (%)
    • Virtual OS per host (%)
  • Data Center

    • PUE Targets – Power-usage effectiveness
  • Milestones met on time (Yes/No)
  • Plan, move/migration, and decommission rate on system (per unit) level
  • Planned (%), (amount)
  • Moved/migrated (%), (amount)
  • Decommissioned (%), (amount)
Service windows
  • Zero service window breach for relocation of production environments

    • The approved service window is exceeded and the service availability is affected negatively
Don’t miss my next post on data center consolidation and optimization project pitfalls to avoid
Magnus Manders, CTO, Capgemini Infrastructure Services Nordic
PS. I believe that everything should be virtualized until proven not possible 

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