July 12, 2022

Align Completes Data Center Consolidation and Migration—Saving the Client $3M in Lease Extension

by: Align

07Z

Align Completes Data Center Consolidation and
Migration—Saving the Client $3M in Lease Extension

The Overview

A global retail and commercial bank had a data center lease set to expire in March 2022. They were looking to consolidate their two data centers of approximately 11,000 sq. ft. into one data center of 3,000 sq. ft. or face a $3M lease extension penalty. This production facility had 14 year-old-infrastructure, a legacy network and included 3,100 technology assets. A key challenge was pre-tested seed equipment which required intense testing of the infrastructure and connectivity. This provided the team with a complicated and risky consolidation program.

Despite these challenges, Align was able to provide a robust project management solution that included a team with expertise in data center design, infrastructure builds, consolidations and migrations. With the team’s vast experience, we successfully managed the relocation.

The Solution

The technology project team was initiated seven months prior to the original decommission date of the facility to allow enough time for the space to be returned to the landlord in its original condition. However, due to various technology challenges; lack of documentation, legacy network equipment, the “lift and shift” nature of an active environment—the schedule needed to be adjusted. We worked with the construction team to collaborate on a schedule that successfully met everyone’s needs and would ensure the space would be prepared for handoff by the lease expiration date. In order to achieve the needed transparency of the technology, Align leveraged our in-house SMEs on the project. We established a comprehensive team to gather, design and manage the following areas:

Success Story Graphics_Large (2)-1Once the teams were assembled and all project phases outlined, Align addressed the initial challenge which was to discover the technology that needed to be relocated and decommissioned. We needed to understand the capacity needs for the smaller data center and how the incoming technology, physical cabinet space, power and cabling infrastructure would be integrated.

This required re-designing cabinets, coordinating additional power, cabling and network equipment. There were additional challenges surrounding the limited over-used connectivity in the facility that required in-depth knowledge of building and inner connectivity of their networks and support systems.

The team’s ability to think outside the box and identify potential issues was vital to keep the project on track. Our comprehensive consolidation plan identified the future state for the workloads and applications and ensured that the necessary connectivity, space and power had been carefully configured and tested before any migration wave.

Expedited Consolidation & Migration Timeline

Picture1

Key Project Challenges

  • Legacy network with end-of-life and other end-of-support equipment
  • Lack of system admin documentation and
    visibility that caused move wave delays
  • Moving an active network between floors called for extensive cabling and cabinet patching
  • Resource fluctuation due to COVID surge and quarantine requirements

The Results

The team successfully completed the consolidation and migration program within the Download Consolidation success storynine-month timeframe despite the numerous challenges, saving the client from a $3M lease penalty.

Relocating a 14-year-old active network between floors required detailed management, expertise and teamwork. We successfully handled the gaps in the documentation and the entanglement of the infrastructure as a team with various experts who worked together to painstakingly verify the physical assets were married to the logical information. This information provided us the required transparency to bundle the assets into migration waves.

We accomplished this relocation program as a cohesive group of passionate experts enjoying the challenge—delivering the project on-time without any major network outages or impact to the business.

To learn more about how Align can help with any data center or migration efforts, visit our Migration solutions webpage, available here, or schedule a call with our team today. 

★★★★★

“Align is our trusted provider for all our Managed Services and cybersecurity needs. They provide us best-in-class IT services that not only help drive productivity and growth, but ensure we meet both current and evolving compliance and security requirements with ease. As consultants to financial advisors, trust and reliability are indispensable to our operations, which is why we never hesitate to refer Align to our very own client base. Align isn’t just our partner, they are an extension of our team. We look forward to entrusting them with our IT infrastructure for years to come.”

Ed Fasano - Experienced Advisory Consultants LLC