Tougher road ahead for fed data-center consolidation

Whatever you call it, the relatively easy phase of the massive Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative (FDCCI) is over, reports John Moore in Federal Computer Week.

Many departments and agencies have rid themselves of the most obvious efficiency offenders: small data centers, facilities previously marked for closure and IT resources deemed surplus to mission requirements.

Since FDCCI was announced in February 2010, federal IT shops have closed about 20 percent of the data centers the initiative is seeking to eliminate by 2015. Some agencies are already reporting significant cost savings. But wringing more efficiency out of the government’s IT infrastructure calls for a greater level of effort. Therefore, the next round of consolidation will require more time and planning, with greater potential for significant operational changes, according to agency and industry executives.

The Census Bureau is already following the trajectory from straightforward to more difficult consolidation tasks. In 2011, the bureau closed seven data centers as planned, including a secondary center that provided a surge capability for the decennial census. That move, in conjunction with server virtualization, will save the bureau $1 million, CIO Brian McGrath said.

To read Moore’s full report click here.

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