Data centers are the crossroad for connectivity, empowering various industries in a multitude of ways with digital transformation as the main objective. In 2022, we’re expecting to see enterprises make massive shifts in their daily operations and tech adoption, which data centers will aid. The trends we’re expecting to see next year include: a greater focus on Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance (ESG) initiatives, a growing distributed workforce, increased autonomy within enterprises, and an increase in hybrid cloud adoption.
Sustainability initiatives are no longer a bonus for enterprises. ESG investing has brought sustainability to the forefront of many business plans for 2022, making it the expectation. It’s up to each business to take accountability for their part in fostering a greener world. Enterprises who do not prioritize sustainability can be greatly impacted.
Part of enterprises prioritizing ESG is finding data centers that also prioritize sustainability. Data centers are historically known to be energy-guzzling facilities, but many data centers are utilizing energy efficient technologies and renewable energy resources to greatly decrease their carbon footprint and energy consumption.
The Covid-19 pandemic has shown us how it’s possible for so many people to work from home (WFH). Companies are seeing a lot of employees who are requesting to WFH full time or want a hybrid work environment. As a result, next year we plan to see a growing distributed workforce. Businesses are offering WFH or a hybrid environment to attract more potential employees and keep existing employees. Big companies like Microsoft, Facebook, and Shopify have announced they will make remote work permanent in their business model. This benefits the employers as well with a decrease in spending on office space and being able to access talent from almost anywhere in the world. Some businesses are getting creative to make WFH more engaging and fun – for example: Ericsson Company gave their employees VR headsets to access a virtual office during their onboarding process.
Data centers play a huge role in enabling remote work as they serve as that crossroad or central point for big data and essential business applications. When employees sign into work for the day, they will likely be utilizing assets located in a data center. These facilities provide many different solutions such as enhanced security, backup solutions, reliability and more.
For example, edge data centers are decentralizing processing and data, and bringing access closer to the end-user. Edge computing provides extremely low latency and cost efficiency.
As 2020 and 2021 have presented a new era of digitization and automation, it’s no surprise enterprises are looking for ways to work more effectively and efficiently in order to increase productivity and profitability. Enterprises are simply working to better streamline their business processes and operations. A major way of doing this is utilizing Artificial Intelligence (AI). The technology is very versatile and can be used for many day-to-day tasks such as email marketing, market & customer research, data protection, and much more.
Data centers also utilize AI to even further optimize performance and improve operations for the enterprises it serves. AI offers cost effectiveness and process efficiency for the facility and the enterprises. AI use in data centers helps manage and protect the network while also moving workloads and business applications.
Cloud adoption for enterprises has completely skyrocketed in 2021, and we don’t expect this pace to slow down anytime soon. Enterprises are getting more familiar with cloud connectivity solutions that will best fit their business needs. A cloud solution for many enterprises that seems to be a good, sweet spot is the hybrid cloud solution.
With a private cloud, enterprises have access to a private internal network and have selected users within that network dedicated for the organization. With a public cloud, data is managed by third-party server providers and connectivity is provided using the public internet. Hybrid cloud is the best of both worlds. This connectivity solution provides agility and allows enterprises to move workloads between the different cloud solutions and offers a more competitive advantage.
To conclude, data centers have an array of responsibility to keep pace with shifts and increases in demand to support the greatest technologies and advancements enterprises and the industry can offer. Data centers are providing the ability for enterprises to successfully implement digital transformation and are a driving force for the upcoming industry trends that 2022 will be sure to see.