The first International Data Center Day will be October 29 as an effort to raise awareness of the data center industry and to inspire the next generation of talent. The initiative, launched by 7×24 Exchange International, is the latest in a series of efforts to address a looming talent gap for data centers and cloud computing infrastructure.
“International Data Center Day is a celebration of the data center industry and the mission critical profession,” said Juli Ierulli, marketing manager of Caterpillar, Inc.. “Our goal for this initiative is to raise awareness of the data center industry and to share the vast variety of careers that are available for the next generation of professionals. By sharing how data centers make a difference in our daily lives and the career opportunities we are helping to ensure the future of the industry.”
The Oct. 29 event, scheduled during the annual 7×24 Exchange Fall Conference, is designed to connect with future generations and ensure a steady flow of skilled labor, enhance the public image of data centers. The events objectives include:
- Provide resources to educate people about what data centers are and how they work.
- Illustrate the importance of the data center industry on our daily lives.
- Share information on pursuing a career as a data center professional.
- Create more opportunities for mission critical firms to recruit future employees
As Data Center Frontier noted in our 2019 forecast and executive roundtable, finding quality staff is becoming a challenge, and will grow in urgency in coming years with the graying of the existing workforce. The industry is redoubling efforts to hire and train military veterans, and at least one service provider is refocusing its business to address the growing need for data center construction and facilities management professionals. We showcase current openings for data center professionals at the Data Center Frontier Jobs site (a partnership with Pkaza Critical Facilities Recruiting).
Those measures can provide short-term solutions for data center staffing challenges. But meeting the industry’s needs over the long-term requires a more determined effort to raise awareness at schools.
“In 2015 members challenged 7×24 Exchange with attracting qualified talent for the future of the industry,” said Bob Cassiliano, the chairman and CEO of 7×24 Exchange International and president and CEO of Business Information Services, Inc. “7×24 Exchange soon realized that many parents, teachers and students are unaware of the Data Center industry and need to understand what data centers are and how they operate – hence the development of a STEM initiative which includes a mentoring program, a Women in Mission Critical Operations (WiMCO) community, a Data Center 101 session, video and now the creation of International Data Center Day.”
As part of International Data Center Day, 7×24 Exchange is inviting data center operators to open their doors and host data center tours for student groups, demonstrating what a data center is, and how it operates. The group has also created an educational presentation titled “What Is A Data Center?” to provide students with a user-friendly explanation of data centers and how they deliver Internet content.
“We developed this resource so that K-12 students, teachers, and parents could learn about what data centers are and how important the profession is to supporting our everyday lives,” said Aheli Purkayastha, the Product Manager at Purkay Labs.
For more information and ways to get involved, visit the International Data Center Day web site.