Many enterprises consider data center operations as a necessary evil. After all, operating critical facilities like data centers is not a core competency for most enterprises. And if data center operations were easy and inexpensive they might earn a more benevolent moniker.

But the fact remains that data centers require highly-trained critical facilities specialists, sophisticated monitoring and management systems, and specialized processes to operate. It seems vast amounts of time and money go into designing and building data centers. However, hiring, training and maintaining the specialized operations teams and monitoring/management systems to effectively run them often get glossed over.

Many in the industry seem to have the sense that a facility costing so much should run itself! A silly statement, I admit, but actions speak louder than words, and the actions of many enterprises indicate this statement is more accurate than we’d like to recognize. At the end of the day, this is a serious problem, but not surprising.

To address the facility side of this problem, for the past 15 years or so data center colocation and facilities management vendors have entered the market to train, augment and support enterprise data center facility teams, and even to fully outsource the problem.

To address the monitoring and capacity management systems side of this problem, data center infrastructure management (DCIM) software vendors began selling software 10-plus years ago. The problem is that DCIM software, like critical facilities, requires specialized people, processes and training, none of which enterprises possess naturally and all of which have proven to be expensive to develop and maintain. Only recently has the industry come to realize and openly acknowledge this critical problem with DCIM software.

Therefore, to fully address the monitoring and capacity management systems side of the problem, new data center service vendors are now entering the market that deploy, train, augment and support both facilities and enterprise data center IT management systems and teams. Their solutions are compelling and well worth investigating.