Google and Facebook inspire new GM data center
General Motors has launched its own data center after an announcement last year to stop outsourcing their IT work. They’ve taken inspiration from Google and Facebook in their approach.
General Motors Corp. CIO Randy Mott announced last year that the company would be launching its own data center and stop outsourcing IT work. The data center has finally been completed with a hefty price tag of $130 million, and launched today; GM is hoping that a modernized approach to IT will help accelerate the turnaround led by CEO Dan Akerson.
This Google data center may have inspired GM
The data center is, quite curiously, modeled in ways very similar to advances made by Google and Facebook. It has been designed to be easier to maintain and expand, as well as cheaper to cool than older, more conventional data centers. A mixture of both conventional and experimental technologies have also found its way into the center, something GM hopes will allow them to take on twice as many IT projects as before. “If we are going to win, we must turn IT into a competitive advantage and not treat it as something that is just a utility,” said Akerson at a press conference on Monday.
General Motors hopes that not only the data center, but the entire company, is on the verge of a major shift; something Randy Mott is saying has “just begun”. GM managed to survive after the government bailed it out in 2009, but it had to shut down several brands such as Pontiac and Saturn. The company’s turnaround is still in its infancy and this IT project is the biggest internal initiative since the bankruptcy. “We believe we can grow faster with stronger IT. That is why we are making investments in our own data centers and innovation centers,” says Mott.