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FEATURE POWER Struggling for power Delivering enterprise power continuity Words by Luke Horton-Walker, operations director, Cameo I


n a time where businesses depend on vast amounts of IT hardware


to function, it is surprising that the provision and maintenance of power falls under the radar when allocating technology budgets. A recent report by Spiceworks found that just six per cent of business hardware budgets across Europe and North America will be invested in bolstering power infrastructures in 2020. Companies require a seamless power supply for staff to thrive. The technology needed to enable this is becoming more sophisticated by the day. So, why is the risk of a disrupted power supply often overlooked, and what does this mean for modern enterprises?


WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST ROADBLOCKS TO SEAMLESS ENTERPRISE POWER? One of the biggest issues at hand is a general lack of consideration or understanding about the impact a loss of power can have on a business. With this comes an inevitable lack of investment in hardware and ongoing support services to provide the critical level of maintenance to both keep a business online and resolve issues when power levels are interrupted. In the event of power failure, businesses without sufficient battery backup systems can risk the loss of data, the compromise of networks and a decline in overall business performance, should it take a considerable amount of time to get system back up and running after a sudden loss of power. This should be a particular concern for large enterprises that collect, store and utilise large amounts of information in robust, on-premise data centres. Failure to recognise the importance of


IT continuity, and to make the hardware provisions required for seamless enterprise power supply, ultimately pose a huge threat to modern businesses;


20 MARCH 2020 | ELECTRONICS


threats which, if left untreated, can open them up to a number of challenges.


WHY ARE COMMON POWER CHALLENGES OFTEN OVERLOOKED BY DECISION-MAKERS? This is due to a number of factors, the most obvious being that many businesses still neglect power support, as failures can be infrequent. The response to power failures is often reactive rather than proactive, with businesses having to take retrospective actions after downtime, instead of laying down the foundations needed to prevent these issues from taking place. That said, simply installing a more robust power system does not always offer that ‘quick fix’.


For example, investing in hardware from providers that lack the technical capabilities to identify issues and provide ongoing support after installation can cause heavy roadblocks further down the line, as the usage of hardware increases. Taking steps to teaming battery backup hardware with engineering expertise can ultimately help to protect the power delivered to business equipment and keep operations running smoothly - even when power wavers beyond safe levels.


HOW CAN BUSINESSES SOLVE THESE CHALLENGES? The most effective way for businesses to remedy power supply issues is to regularly assess their infrastructure against the levels of hardware used across their site. Conducting regular maintenance and scale support as your business grows will ensure continuity and reduce the risk of outages due to hindered power levels or vast IT usage.


Whether you have the capabilities in-house or need to outsource to a team of specialists, decision-makers must ensure that all power support is conducted by experts in the field, with the ability to identify issues when they occur and resolve them both quickly and with consideration on attaining and ensuring maximum safety. Due to such high demand, UPS and battery backup technology has been developing rapidly over the last few years. This now requires a more intricate technical skill set to maintain this infrastructure and keep connected electronics functioning. For example, modular UPS


technology has witnessed a huge surge in uptake of late, and engineers must be trained to identify issues and rectify them with the latest set of technologies. We’re now also seeing


Batteries require little maintenance, so offer an alternative, should concerns arise about the stability of equipment


the growing use of lithium-ion batteries across power support and maintenance suppliers. Due to their low maintenance and ability to charge quickly, these batteries are quickly becoming the go-to option, and those delivering support must be aware of the latest hardware that can best protect businesses under any circumstances.


In an ideal world, providers should now cover both the parts and engineering support to provide an all-round service for installation, maintenance and disposal. The onus is therefore on suppliers to ensure their technical team has the expertise to advise on the components that can safeguard seamless electrical supplies.


Cameo www.cameouk.com / ELECTRONICS


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