£300 million in savings targeted
The UK public sector faces a mammoth consolidation programme which could see hundreds of separate data centers consolidated into just 10-12 facilities. In this week’s ICT strategy document published by the Office of the Government CIO, John Suffolk it said the data center strategy would change radically over the three to five years.
It said: ‘Over the next three to five years, approximately 10 to 12 highly resilient strategic data centres for the public sector will be established to a high common standard. This will then enable the consolidation of existing public data centres into highly secure and resilient facilities, managed by expert suppliers.’
The document said: ‘Development of the data centre infrastructure in the public sector has followed a similar pattern to that in most large organisations. Budgets and procurement decisions have been devolved to many different levels, meaning that while procurement decisions have been taken in the best interests of each individual organisation at a specific time, at the ‘big picture’ level this has resulted in a proliferation of data centres.’ The strategy will start with central government departments before being rolled out ‘to the whole of the public sector.’
So far individual departments such as the giant Department of Work and Pensions have consolidated their number of data centers from 4 to 2. The document said:’ As well as savings on ICT infrastructure costs in the order of £300 million a year, this will also make a significant contribution to environmental targets through a reduction of up to 75% in power and cooling requirements.’