John Consoli, vice president of sales and marketing at FieldView Solutions ( says:

Accessing real-time energy data is vital for the successful operation of today’s enterprise data centers. The adage “you can’t manage what you can’t measure” has never been more relevant to what we do. The data center’s critical resources are space, power, cooling and connectivity. Most enterprise data center managers can tell you exactly how many data ports and circuits they have available, but, at best have “guesstimates” when it comes to usable space, power and cooling. The vast majority implement safety buffers and over provision to ward off catastrophic failure. The tradeoff is catastrophic WASTE that goes right to the bottom line.

Managing today’s complex, high density data centers without real-time monitoring is like trying to fly a Jumbo airliner without an instrument panel. The value proposition for implanting a real time energy management tool literally writes itself. The ability to increase utilization of available resources by 20, 30 or 40 percent has a HUGE impact on both operating expenses and capital expenditures.

How much energy can be saved by raising data center temperatures 2-3 degrees Fahrenheit? What if you could delay or totally avoid new construction because you find that there is 30% more available power than you thought? Real-time energy monitoring can deliver both of these things, and more! We see it happen for our clients every month!!

As mentioned before how important is the instrument panel to a jumbo jetliner? FAA reports that the most advanced commercial jet monitors up to 800 data points per minute. A 5000 square foot, Tier 3 data center with a load of 5kW per rack has potentially 100 times more than that!

The biggest challenge with regard to implementing real-time energy management is two-fold”

1) People are resistant to change
2) Organizations have not developed a cohesive action plan for the data once it is collected

Data center and IT managers need to have a plan! Failure to plan is planning to fail!

The plan should be detailed and documented and involve stakeholders from IT, facilities, senior management and lines of business. It is often worth the investment to:
• Bring a professional, third party consulting firm to manage the project.
• Implement a plan for selecting the right tool, based upon the needs and goals of the organization.
• Consider vendor evaluation as a critical success factor.
• Create a documented plan for how data will be used and what the positive impact will be on corporate goals.

Implementation of real-time energy management should be important enough to be included in the company’s annual report and should be on everyone’s radar screen, up to and including the CEO.

Insist your vendors “put up or shut up.” Don’t be the first one on your block to implement their solution. Do not settle for smoke and mirror presentations. Your selection process MUST include a Proof of Concept (POC) installation at one of your sites!! The POC should have a clear, written scope that includes documentation of all acceptance criteria.

Don’t be afraid to invest resources (money, time, personnel) in the POC effort. Make this, part of your project budget from day one.

John Consoli is VP of Sales and Marketing at FieldView Solutions, the industry-leading Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) provider, which recently unveiled FieldView 5.0 IT power management tailored with Microsoft® Business Intelligence (BI) tool sets, providing access to structured data through an Open Database Connection (ODBC), with colocation support enabling application assets to be provisioned and easily maintained.