This week we’ve launched our first data center course, offered through Datacenter Dynamics. Jon Koomey is the instructor, and we’re all really excited to have him teaching. I asked Jon to talk about his inspiration for the course. Here’s what he said:
My name is Jonathan Koomey, and I’ve been studying data centers for about 15 years.
In the twenty first century, all businesses are information technology (IT) businesses, but most enterprise IT is detached from the business it’s supposed to serve.  In all but a few exemplary companies, it’s impossible to assess the benefits and costs of a new IT project. Even worse, enterprise IT is usually deployed in ways that slow innovation and miss opportunities for increasing revenue.  In addition, enterprise IT is horribly inefficient, with 10 to 30% of servers in the data center using electricity but delivering no useful computing services, and utilization of servers often being less than 10%.
I’m developing an online class in collaboration with HeatSpring and Data Center Dynamics to teach executives how to fix these problems.  It’s called “Data Center Essentials for Executives“, and it builds on my long experience in studying the data center industry.  The course grew out of the realization that the most critical problems in data center operations (like having separate budgets for the IT and facilities departments, or slow IT deployments inhibiting innovation) are issues that only management can fix.
This class will be targeted to managers who want to transform the way their company uses IT, with the goal of turning data center operations from a cost center to a cost-reducing profit center.  The ideal participant would work for a high level executive (or be such an executive) and be empowered to redesign how IT services are delivered inside the enterprise.
I hope you and your colleagues will consider signing up for the class, which will be eye opening for those who haven’t focused much on IT before. The biggest business story of the early 21st century is better integrating IT with legacy businesses, and if your company doesn’t take up that challenge, your competitors will get their first (and that story won’t have a happy ending).
The class will be held online from November 10 through December 12, 2014.  I look forward to “seeing” you there.
Best regards,
Research Fellow, Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy and Finance, Stanford University