Roles in a Data Center

Written by Joe Kozlowicz on Wednesday, March 12th 2014

The data center at Green House Data is a very unique place to work. Many of the roles we have are loosely defined, meaning every employee has a broad spectrum of knowledge. In the data center that means the team must know Linux, Windows, and Mac. Each must work with storage, networking, systems, software, hardware installation or repair, and running cables. While this may be challenging at times, it gives our team a lot of opportunities to develop professionally. That being said, there are different roles within the data center, so lets explore them a little further.

data center job roles

Service Technicians
Service Technicians are responsible for managed services, break fix, and hardware support. They also work on-site for customer solutions such as administration and basic architecting. 

Data Center Specialist
Data Center Specialists maintain the facilities. They keep the performance of the machines in top condition by cleaning everything floor to ceiling. The Data Center Specialist manages cables and cords, which need to be neat and dust free. They help the NOC Techs to rack new servers and change out hard drives that have gone bad.

NOC Technician
The Network Operation Center Technician (or NOC Tech) is the first line of defense in the Data Center. They monitor the physical facilities to ensure that equipment is locked, sitting at a normal temperature, and not making unusual sounds or scents. NOC Techs are also the first line of support.  Within minutes they respond to tickets, then solve the problem within an hour or two. If they cannot fix the issue it is escalated to the appropriate support level (Systems Administrators and Systems Engineers).  Monitoring software is also used by NOC Techs in order to spot signs of trouble before they become a problem, such as a server filling up available disk space or a sudden outage. Many times they will spot a problem before a customer even knows it is happening and send them a message to let them know they are working to fix it.

Systems Administrator
A Systems Administrator is able to help when a problem is escalated by the NOC Techs.  They support problems that are outside the scope of the NOC, becoming the second line of defense when a problem is spotted. When new infrastructure or design is planned by Systems Engineers, it is the System Administrators that execute the plan.  Other work includes routine and non-routine maintenance as well as emergency repairs to keep the infrastructure running smoothly here at Green House Data.  A Systems Administrator will also provide support for large-scale customer implementations. 

Systems Engineer
The Systems Engineers are responsible for the final level of escalated tickets.  They provide support for all levels of data center employees. In addition they are responsible for architecting our infrastructure, products, and large-scale customer implementations. They decide how the design and architecture should be implemented to best solve the problem. However, they must ensure the solution will integrate with existing infrastructure and keep data stable and secure.

One of our Systems Administrators, Tim Cook, summed up the data center very well, “We have the opportunity here to wear a variety of hats. We all work together to make our systems run, to continually develop them for future growth, as well as implementing new product offerings to keep Green House Data a competitive cloud provider.”

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