Kundra lays out deadlines for data center consolidation

Federal CIO Vivek Kundra has issued a memo July 20 that lays out deadlines for closing unnecessary federal data centers.

Officials have until Sept. 30 to complete their data center consolidation plans and their progress reports, according to the memo issued July 20.

By Oct. 7, they must have posted online their plans for consolidating the data centers. The plans will be cross-posted to the CIO.gov website.

Starting in fiscal 2012, agencies must begin posting on their websites a current list of data centers they plan to close and the centers that have already been closed or consolidated. The reports are due quarterly.

By next March 31, the Federal Data Center Consolidation Task Force will publish a governmentwide report on the best ways agencies have found to consolidate. The task force will tie the report to actual agency outcomes in their efforts to consolidate data centers, the memo said, adding that it will also look in both the private and public sectors for ways to consolidate.

As more federal data centers close, administration officials foresee a governmentwide marketplace where an agency can find available space in the remaining centers.

In the memo, Kundra described the marketplace as a way to optimize space in a data center with more than one agency using it. The marketplace would “establish the exchange mechanism for agencies to offer and acquire data center capacity and infrastructure,” he wrote. The communities of interest would also verify a need for data centers.

In the marketplace, officials can figure out suitable prices for costs and standard service levels and set up models for transferring funds.

Also, in their fiscal 2013 budget submissions, agencies must include the amount of savings and changes in asset inventories that have come from closures and consolidations. Administration officials are working out how agencies should come to those figures. However, the Office of Management and Budget wants agencies submitting the same information in budgets through fiscal 2015. Read the memo.

Kundra’s memo came the same day officials announced they upped their 2012 goal for closures. The Obama administration intends to shut down 178 data centers in 2012, which would bring the total of closed centers to 373 by the end of the next year, senior officials said July 20.

Kundra said the closures equal roughly 14 football fields worth of space. See which data centers are closing. View the closures on an interactive map.

The White House increased the number of closings because officials have brought agencies together and to do more than "admire the problem," Kundra said.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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