A great deal of attention is being given to data center designs of the future with greater efficiency goals driving much of the new concepts. The industry has recognized that energy consumption or power consumption by data centers is at an all time high and consumption of power significantly impacts the overall running costs of the data center. Electricity now represents 25 to 40 percent of the operational expenditures in most data centers, and already the cost to power a server over its useful life exceeds the original capital expenditure.

"While ripping out an existing data center and starting over may seem like the best approach, it isn't practical for most companies," explained Brad Wurtz, president and CEO, Power Assure. "Increasing the efficiency of existing data centers can save millions of dollars per year in operating expenses, and avoid 100s of millions in CAPEX outlays to build new a data center."

Wurtz advises "C" level executives to ask their data center managers a series of questions to ascertain if money is being wasted due to inefficient management of energy and power resources. Some of these include:
  • How frequently do you measure power usage?
  • What is your baseline power usage?
  • How much of the power allocated to your data center is actually used?
  • What is the limiting factor for your data center, space cooling, or power?
  • What is the average utilization of the servers in your data center?
  • What is the power efficiency of your data center servers?
  • Which applications consume the most power?
  • Do you have a roadmap for improving power management capabilities?
"It is now possible to reduce server power consumption by more than 50 percent in the typical data center," said Wurtz. "It starts with the ability to view and manage power use across facilities and IT equipment, capabilities delivered by emerging Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) solutions."