Technology giant IBM announced Monday that its new 72,000-square-foot disaster-recovery center, the company’s largest facility of its type in the U.S., is now operating at its sprawling Research Triangle Park campus.
IBM touts that its “cloud resiliency center” integrates cloud technology and traditional disaster capabilities to provide disaster recovery efforts that are individually tailored to its corporate customers’ needs. The center, which opened in July, is operating 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Mike Errity, vice president of IBM business continuity and business services, declined during an interview to say how much IBM has invested in the new center but said it’s the “largest investment that IBM global services has made in our business continuity and resiliency services line.”
“We’re in it for the long term,” he said. “We’re making a material investment in RTP.”
Along those same lines, Errity side-stepped the question of how many workers the center, which has been operating since July, now employs or anticipates employing in the future.
“We are hiring,” he said. “We plan on building a substantial work force in the Raleigh area.”
IBM employs thousands of workers at its RTP campus, which encompasses 4 million square feet. IBM has for years declined to specify how many employees it has at specific sites, but Errity said RTP boasts the single largest concentration of IBM employees of any of its sites.
The new cloud resiliency center is designed to recover data within minutes, protecting businesses from disruptions that can be costly. Increasingly, corporate customers are demanding “always on,” Errity said.
IBM employees will monitor customers’ operations remotely from the RTP center and swing into action whenever a “concerning event” occurs, he said.
All entryways to the center are guarded by security, Errity added.
The new RTP center is one of more than 130 cloud resiliency centers that IBM operates worldwide.
IBM points out that, according to a survey by the Ponemon Institute, a substantial outage lasting more than an hour or two costs companies, on average, more that $32,000 a minute.
Errity noted that the global operations center for IBM’s data back-up service is based in RTP – a legacy of the company’s 2008 acquisition of Arsenal Digital Solutions, a 100-employee Cary business that at the time was a leading data storage, protection and backup services company.
Although the cloud resiliency center has its own employees, it can also call upon other IBM employees across the RTP campus as needed.
“RTP offers a vast amount of skills in security, in cloud, in mobile and in analytics, infrastructure technology, data centers operation,” Errity said. “It’s a tangential but at the same time a core benefit of being in RTP.”