This report sets out the findings of a review of the public sector data centre landscape. The landscape review was the first phase of the project to deliver the data hosting and data centre strategy published in April 2014.
The findings in this paper therefore reflect the evidence gathered through the various channels described in section 1 of this document. This evidence was gathered in quarters 1 and 2 in 2013.
The input and analysis of the information gathered from stakeholders described in this document, and a greater understanding of the advancement in technology over the same period was used to guide the direction taken to produce the Data Hosting and Data Centre Strategy for the Scottish public sector.
The stakeholders involved were invited to provide additional comment or reflection and these have been included under the relevant sections. It should be noted that these comments are the views of individuals and therefore should not been seen as representative of the sectors, The Scottish Government or the ICT industry as a whole. It has been very useful in establishing the understanding of the knowledge of stakeholders and information available to the wider public sector on the overall data centre landscape which has helped deliver the strategic requirements.
This report should be viewed as background information that informs the delivery of the strategy.
Scotland's Digital Future: Delivery of Public Services included a commitment to "develop a national strategy to consolidate and re-use the world class data centres available in the public and private sectors across Scotland".
A review was carried out to:
- understand better the current landscape and thinking in the public sector
- understand how technology developments and related service offerings impact on a strategy
- make recommendations as to the approach and content of such a strategy and to recommend next steps
A summary of key findings of the review are as follows:
- public sector organisations are not making decisions against any common set of principles, considerations or evidence and generally lack evidence against which to take decisions on future provision
- a small but significant number are still considering building their own data centre
- some organisations have their own well designed and provisioned data centres which they intend to continue to use for the foreseeable future. However, many are not housed in appropriately secure and reliable facilities, and this represents a significant business risk for the public sector in their drive to provide a Digital First service
- most organisations and sectors have varying levels of requirements for hosting and delivering services. They would be willing to adhere to a national approach if in doing so they can demonstrate that services can be delivered cheaper, securely and highly available
- organisations will be more open to change if guidance and support is available to help them make informed decisions on the best approach for hosting their ICT infrastructure and services. In particular guidance on use of cloud hosting is required
- we need to identify how costs can be measured in a consistent way while providing evidence that secure & reliable services can be delivered out with an organisation's own environment and with robust service level agreements
- data centre providers whose core business is to deliver services and space operate at all security levels and with very tightly controlled service level agreements. They have effective strategies for reaching world class PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness, see annex B) levels and have a clear understanding of energy consumption at all times
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