Every data center conducts some type of regular audit. But IT professionals and data center managers may not be aware of the high – and often hidden – costs associated with their manual audits.
The key to the effective and efficient management of an organization’s data center lies with the ability to capture and comprehend a comprehensive picture of what data center assets exists, where each asset is located and how each individual asset is connected to other assets.
As the complexity of a given data center increases – multiple aisles, multiple high-density cabinets, 2- and 4-post racks containing thousands of individual servers and storage devices – the task of capturing asset information becomes increasingly complex. Simple solutions, such as noting serial numbers in static spreadsheets, become less reliable and costly as hundreds of man-hours are spent wandering a data center looking for asset tags.
Data center IT professionals need holistic data center tools that are designed to track infrastructure assets and facilities assets as well. Some examples are RPDUs, PDUs, CRAHs and UPS. Although these items rarely if ever move, they must also be audited and maintained. IT asset management (ITAM) tools must be able to help users to automate and streamline this process. Ultimately, a programmatic approach based in science and using reliable, repeatable and cost-effective tools and systems is the best solution.
In this slideshow, Asset Vue takes a look at four cost points organizations need to consider when determining the ROI of an IT asset management solution.
Click through for four cost points organizations need to consider when determining the ROI of an IT asset management solution, as identified by Asset Vue.
Initial data collection
The cost for manual data center audits can be high (as much as $15 per asset), even for “readily available” data, which includes equipment manufacturer, model, serial number, name, and location.
A hidden cost here is the unreliable rate of manual data collection, often between 10 to 15 percent. This affects the audit and can often result in re-audits.
A large percentage of data center outages, unauthorized changes and mean time to repair (MTTR) data center assets comes from the inability to properly record and track changes manually in the data center – leading to higher audit costs.
Repeat data audits
A similar cost and effort is involved with repeated manual data audits (such as semi-annual or on-demand audits) as with initial data collection efforts.
High cost: Based on these factors and assumptions, it is not unreasonable for data center operators to see costs of up to $60,000 or 20 man weeks around manual data center audits. And, these are proven to be inaccurate.
Lower cost alternative: Based upon the current cost of implementing a typical passive RFID solution in this scenario, the return on investment would be less than 12 months. And, these are proven to be 99.5 percent accurate.