Commercial Moving

Mastering data center relocation: Essential planning steps and project management tips

technology services

When it comes to relocating a data center, the most important steps take place before a single piece of equipment is moved or byte of data transferred. The key to success is careful, thorough, and strategic planning. With a solid data center migration plan in place—one that includes detailed consideration of the physical infrastructure, IT infrastructure, budget, project management, and follow-up guidelines—the process has exponentially greater chances of flowing smoothly and avoiding costly business disruptions.

Data center relocation checklist

Data center relocations involve physically moving data center equipment to a new location. That can mean fully relocating to a new physical address or shifting areas within a building. Along with evaluating your budget and existing assets, you will need to evaluate the future location’s immediate and long-term fit for size, spacing, power load capabilities, and safety features like ventilation and temperature control. Consider this checklist of data center migration best practices to kick off your relocation process:

  1. Define project goals and objectives for the data center relocation.
  2. Prioritize manageable elements that deliver immediate value.
  3. Create a comprehensive project plan with assigned roles, key dates, status benchmarks for each phase, and contingency plans.
  4. Identify prerequisites, including software and hardware requirements, and ensure compatibility with power, temperature, and cabling at the destination site.
  5. Develop a detailed checklist for moving hardware and equipment.
  6. Delegate relocation tasks and establish a project completion date.
  7. Execute and validate backups to safeguard critical data.
  8. Coordinate proper shutdown, equipment de-installation, packing, transportation, and re-installation.
  9. Plan for post-migration testing, validation, and ongoing management.

The physical aspect of data center migration planning requires special consideration. It may be most cost-effective and time-saving to partner with skilled and experienced data center relocation specialists, gaining access to expertise as well as reliable services that ensure the business is supported throughout the process.

Data center relocation project plan template

Once you’ve crafted your project plan and assigned key roles, it’s time to create a shared planning document to maintain visibility and accountability. Your teams may have a preferred software or shared document system in place, and anything from Excel to Google Docs can be used to craft an effective data center relocation project plan template.

This data center relocation project plan template sample demonstrates a basic outline that can be followed and tailored to your needs:

  • Task Description: Clearly define each task, including hardware relocation, software setup, and testing phases.
  • Task Owner: Assign responsible individuals or teams for each task.
  • Time Estimates: Provide realistic timeframes for task completion.
  • Deadlines: Set deadlines for milestones and final project completion.

Data center relocation timeline

Regardless of the format chosen, ensure that task owners, task details, time estimates, and deadlines are included to create a robust tracking document that will achieve the goal of keeping your data center relocation on time and on budget.