As an MSP, the obligation to pick a proper data center for one’s clients is paramount. In most situation an MSP is monitoring, patching, and taking care of their clients’ critical infrastructure and making sure that is up and running well to keep their businesses running well. However, it is also important for MSPs to choose a data center partner that helps them run their operation without hiccups as well.

A couple main factors and questions to consider when choosing that data center partner would be:

1. Ease of Access
These questions should be targeted to both the location of the facility and access to diverse network carrier partners. How long does it take to get to your equipment if need be? Can your clients have multiple carriers to provide optimal network uptime?

2. Secure
It’s important to consider what level of security is required for your clients and your prospects. Multi-factor authentication is an industry-must in most scenarios and especially when hosting critical infrastructure.

3. Compliant with Industry Regulations
Who are your clients and what compliances govern their industry? Do you work with financial firms (PCI DSS), government entities (FISMA/FedRAMP), healthcare agencies (HIPPA)? It’s paramount to have the physical environment you are colocated within be compliant with industry regulations to win business within many sectors.

4. Redundant
Consider both power, and network redundancy as mentioned above. It is data center best practice to provide at least 2 redundant power circuits with backups for each item in the power chain (PDU’s, UPS’s, Generators, etc.). Without at least 2 redundant carriers the risk of downtime is much higher than many clients are comfortable with.

5. Flexibility
It’s easy to find a data center, but it can be tough to find a partner. It’s important to note that not all colocation needs are alike. Make sure to vet out how flexible your data center partner can be in providing unique solutions when it comes power provisioning, cross connections, cooling capability, density, and price.

When qualifying a data center for you and your clients as an MSP, make sure to vet appropriately and ask important questions that will help to win your business, and keep your infrastructure secure and running optimally.