Iron Mountain: Pioneering Cost-efficient Data Center Colocation

CIO VendorTed MacLean, CMO
With data growing at an explosive rate, enterprises today are burdened with the need to cost effectively manage and operate in-house data centers. In such times, most organizations wake up to the pressing need to escape aging infrastructure and opt for alternative data center approaches like colocation and cloud computing. “However, highly regulated organizations such as federal agencies, and financial services are still concerned with the security and compliance implications of using third party providers for their critical infrastructure,” opines Ted MacLean, Chief Marketing Officer of Iron Mountain. Owing to this, Iron Mountain has launched a multi-tenant and cost efficient data center colocation business, specifically targeted at addressing the needs of these enterprise customers without compromising on security and compliance standards.

Providing data protection and secure storage for over 60 years, Iron Mountain believes security and compliance issues are the primary reasons behind enterprises’ reluctance in outsourcing existing colocation service providers. Addressing this concern with their next generation colocation services, the company concentrates on three core features as their standard offering. The first feature is a Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) portal that allows customer to get a real time view into their power consumption and environmental variables in their deployment. Apart from this, a Compliant Asset Tracking Service (CATS) provides real time visibility and chain of custody for sensitive infrastructure assets. Finally, a Compliance platform with a broad set of industry certifications including FISMA High, ISO 27001, SOC 1/2, HIPAA and PCI 3.0 allows customers the peace of mind to inherit operational controls and meet regulatory compliance requirements.

For added flexibility and ease of use of their data centers, Iron Mountain resorts to overhead Starline busway for delivering power which modifies or upgrades power circuits within minutes as opposed to the traditional data center approaches that may take several days. Another innovation is Software Defined Networking (SDN) used within and across the company's facilities allowing for quick network connectivity and capacity.

Iron Mountain’s National Underground facility is unique in that it also doubles as a highly secure, disaster resistant and efficient data center complex

“These features have been implemented with the customer in mind—where we have eliminated the need for exhaustive upfront planning,” states MacLean. Another feature unique to the company is their National Underground facility, a former limestone mine that is 220 feet underground which also doubles as a highly secure, disaster resistant and efficient data center complex. “The data center takes advantage of geothermal cooling from the limestone walls, and constant ambient temperatures to drive some of the lowest Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) ratios in the industry,” informs MacLean. This facility has been a huge success and was even recognized by the state of Pennsylvania with a $2 million grant for development.

Focusing on sustainable growth to drive operational efficiencies, MacLean says that his interest in running becomes an inspiration behind the work culture and performance of Iron Mountain. "Much like running a marathon, addressing the challenges of customers requires a commitment to stay the course and pursue long range outcomes, and Iron Mountain pioneers that," remarks MacLean. One of Iron Mountain's long standing customers is Marriott who chose the National Underground data center for a disaster recovery site. Marriott was able to reduce their recovery time for business critical systems while taking advantage of the security and resiliency of the facility.

To enhance their customer’s value proposition, Iron Mountain recently announced a strategic partnership with EMC to offer cloud backup and data replication services using EMC technology. In the near future the company is looking at expanding into major metro markets in the U.S. such as Dallas, Northern Virginia and Chicago.

Iron Mountain

Boston, MA

Ted MacLean, CMO

Provides storage and information management services to organizations helping them lower storage costs, comply with regulations, and recover from disaster.