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Implementation and Progress to Date

Metric Target Values

OMB will measure agency progress for this initiative using the following optimization, cost savings, and closure metrics and goals on a quarterly basis, by way of agencies quarterly data center inventory submissions. These optimization, cost-savings, and closure metrics and goals apply to all data centers at agency facilities.

Optimization, cost-savings, and closure metrics and goals apply to all federally-owned data centers, except high-performance computing (HPC) nodes.

Goal 1: Optimization

The following optimization metrics are listed in order of priority. Agencies shall achieve and maintain all listed target values by the end of fiscal year 2018:

Table 1. Government-wide Optimization Targets for Tiered Data Centers1

Metric Definition Calculation FYE 2018 Target Value
Energy Metering (%) Percent of total gross floor area (GFA)2 in an agency’s tiered data center inventory located in tiered data centers that have power metering. Total GFA of Energy Metered Data Centers / Total GFA of All Tiered Data Centers 100%
Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE)3 (Ratio) Proportion of total data center energy used by IT equipment. Total Energy Used / Total IT Equipment Energy Used ≤ 1.5 (≤ 1.4 for new data centers)
Virtualization (Ratio) Ratio of operating systems (OS) to physical servers. Total Server Count + Total Virtual OS / Total Physical Servers ≥ 4
Server Utilization & Automated Monitoring (%) Percent of time busy (measured as 1 – percent of time spent idle), measured directly by continuous, automated monitoring software,4 discounted by the fraction of data centers fully equipped with automated monitoring. Average Server Utilization * Percent of Physical Servers Equipped with Automated Monitoring ≥ 65%
Facility Utilization (%) Portion of total gross floor area in tiered data centers that is actively utilized for racks that contain IT equipment. Total Active Rack Count 5 * 30 sq. ft. / Total Gross Floor Area ≥ 80%

Only the Server Utilization & Automated Monitoring optimization metric shall apply to non-tiered data centers. High-performance computing (HPC) nodes can be excluded from calculations of Virtualization and Server Utilization & Automated Monitoring.

Goal 2: Cost Savings and Avoidance

Agencies shall, by the end of fiscal year 2018, reduce Government-wide annual costs attributable to physical data centers by at least 25%, relative to the fiscal year 2016 IT Infrastructure Spending data submitted to the Federal IT Dashboard.6 Agencies shall collectively achieve the following amounts of savings (combined cost savings and cost avoidance)7 in each of fiscal years 2016, 2017, and 2018:

Table 2. Cost Savings Targets

FY2014 Physical Data Center Spending Total Savings Targeted by FYE 2018
$5.4 billion $2.7 billion

Within 30 days after publication of this document, OMB OFCIO will set individual cost savings and cost avoidance goals for each agency.

These metrics will be tracked on the Federal IT Dashboard


  • 1While agencies should strive to achieve each applicable optimization target for each data center, only PUE targets will be calculated on a per-data center basis. All other targets will be calculated at the agency inventory-level.
  • 2“Total gross floor area” is defined as total square footage available for IT equipment and includes all associated corridors, walkways, and air circulation requirements. This does not include office space, mechanical rooms, or storage areas.
  • 3PUE shall be calculated by OMB based on quarterly average IT and facility electricity usage data.
  • 4Server utilization shall be collected continuously and reported as a quarterly average.
  • 5“Active” racks are those that have IT equipment consuming electricity.
  • 6Benchmarked against the sum of all non-cloud data center costs (including data center labor, software, hardware, electricity, and facility) found in physical data center fields of the IT Inventory Summary Table of the IT Dashboard.
  • 7Consistent with OMB Circular A-131, the term “cost savings” refers to “a reduction in actual expenditures below the projected level of costs to achieve a specific objective,” and the term “cost avoidance” refers to “an action taken in the immediate time frame that will decrease costs in the future.”