Data Center Downtime and Outages: Understanding the Costly Impact

Data center reliability is critical now more than ever in today’s dynamic workforce with constantly changing business demands. The stakes are high for enterprises when data center downtime and outages occur. According to the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of an outage increased 7 percent from $690,204 in 2013 to $740,357 in 2016 with single incident losses reaching a high of $2.4 million.


Considering the intrinsic and extrinsic costs, such as financial penalties for non-compliance, user productivity losses, lack of consumer confidence and lower customer retention – the losses add up quickly. Only 27 percent of companies received a passing grade for disaster readiness, according to a 2014 survey by the Disaster Recovery Preparedness Council. Likewise, increased dependency on data centers means that overall outages and downtime are growing more costly over time.

What Your Company Can Do To Prevent Data Center Outages?

 UPS System Failure

  • Regularly monitor UPS batteries’ ambient temperature and cell voltages to keep track of their status. Follow battery maintenance best practices when performing capacity testing and do it regularly.

 Cybercrime (DDoS)

  • Security must be addressed at every level especially since cybercrime is becoming a leading cause of unplanned outages. To increase resistance against attacks, operators should perform regular system audits and ensure that their compliance certifications are updated.

Accidental Human Error

  • Conducting regular and comprehensive training for data center staff should be a top priority. You can also document methods of procedure (MOPs) for performing complex actions to minimize errors and ensure desired outcomes.

 Water, Heat or CRAC Failure

  • Utilizing N+1 redundancy, establishing efficient load management, and performing regular preventive maintenance can help mitigate outages due to water, heat or CRAC failures.

 Weather Related

  • Natural disasters are inevitable but taking precautionary measures ahead of time can minimize the impact of an outage. Ensure that your disaster recovery plan and back up diesel generators are tested regularly.

 Generator Failure

  • Generator failures account for just 6 percent of outages, it is still important to test generators and switchgears regularly. Utilizing N+1 redundancy and performing preventive maintenance should be a priority.

 IT Equipment Failure

  • Perform daily physical inspections to ensure all systems are in excellent working condition. Utilizing N+1 redundancy in your data center can also mitigate infrastructure failures.

 How Can Providers Work To Prevent Downtime?

There are several strategies data center operators should leverage to help prevent more common causes of downtime, one of which is robust redundancy in critical systems throughout the data center. When a facility is equipped with backup sources for power, connectivity and cooling, even if one source is interrupted or otherwise negatively impacted, operators can switch to the redundant system to keep the data center up and running. Data center downtime is a costly event that can create considerable business losses when it comes to productivity and collaboration.


To find out more about how Provision Data Services ensures the highest reliability and uptime possible, contact our team today.

Provision Data Services provides secure and scalable data center, colocation and interconnection solutions with Tier 3 reliability for enterprise users. Provision’s managed data center services are anchored in densely connected, strategically located facilities. Headquartered in Dallas, the company’s customized IT solutions offer customers advanced IT infrastructures to allocate company resources more efficiently. For more information, visit Provision Data Services’ website at