Ways of Combating Human Error in Data Centers

Human error in the data center industry is a bigger problem than most would realize. A recent research revealed that causes of problems in data centers such as downtime instances are attributable to human errors. The research further pointed out that human error is the root cause of unplanned outages in data centre Toronto. Another survey showed that 48% of IT professionals said that 60% to 80% data center problems were mainly caused by human error. This is enough to show us that if we help to mitigate and prevent human errors in data centers, we could experience almost zero downtime and our data centers would be more efficient and reliable.

It is important to note that the best way to avoid downtime and other problems in data centers is to anticipate the potential problems and try to prevent them before they happen. Developing contingency plans helps to handle and solve them when they happen. The perfect way to solving a problem better is dealing with the cause. With human error being the root cause of major and many data center problems, it is common sense that we are supposed to have strategies in place to try our best and combat human error. By doing this, we will be solving and preventing more than 60% of our data center problems which will, in turn, help us save a lot in maintenance.

All human beings make mistakes therefore human error cannot be fully eliminated. However, there are several data center solution in which data centers can commit themselves to and it will help a great deal in eliminating human error. They include but not limited to:

1. Robust processes and documentation

ost data centers have established specific operational process controls and procedures. This is not enough as it is most effective to have a robust strategy for documenting that activity. While this creates a standardized approach to operations, every operational procedure done in the data center should be carried out in accordance to the documented, validated and well-practiced procedure. Creating, documenting and maintaining this processes could consume a lot of time and resources, but the after benefits are mitigating the risk associated with human error.

2. Staff training

As human beings, everyone is limited in knowledge. Once in a while, the staff try to make “educated guesses” that in most incidents turn wrong leading to unexpected outages. Mandatory employee training regardless of their job title or positions would go a long way in helping to eradicate human error.

3. Inspections and walkthroughs

Data center employees should take some precious serious time to physically walk through and inspect all systems of a data center facility. Documented inspection procedures should be available, which will guide the specific areas and tools needed to be checked during these walkthroughs. This will help the staff to identify easily-corrected issues and prevent them from causing large-scale problems.

4. Physical data security

It is somewhat important to limit access of data center only to authorized personnel. This helps reduce lot of contact from employees hence reducing conditions where human error take effect without impacting mission-critical functions of the rest of the organization.