The magazine of Friedhelm Loh Group

The magazine of Friedhelm Loh Group

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Innovation – Rittal

Modernisation aims for crisis resilience

Text Stefan Mutschler, Hans-Robert Koch ––– Photography

Data centre managers are often known for being far-sighted. All the same, the pandemic took them all by surprise. Many now have a bad feeling that another pandemic will occur – or perhaps even several at the same time. However, better crisis resilience requires extensive modernisation measures – and not just in terms of technology, but most importantly on an organisational and structural level, too. According to a study carried out in July 2020 by the Uptime Institute, many companies have already made pandemic awareness and planning part of their business continuity framework.

Almost all the participants in this study (94 per cent) said they will improve their readiness for a pandemic and their business continuity planning. Some of the procedures and processes planned for the medium term require changes to technology and strategy – combined with bigger investments. Among the measures that almost every data centre operator wants to put in place quickly are shorter cleaning cycles, health screening for visitors, more frequent replacement of air filters and bigger spare parts stores. All these elements result from a heightened awareness of pandemics and form part of modified processes. Some – primarily in the USA – are even planning to set up emergency on-site accommodation and food stores.

Bild Mann guckt nach oben

Data centre operators also want to improve their plans for immediate measures so they can be ready to go on alert at any time. This includes, for example, rapidly implementing staffing plans, organising fuel stores and modifying maintenance processes. They also aim to participate in regular training on how to fight and respond to a pandemic. However, all that falls under just a single category – “More and better pandemic planning”. The Uptime Institute has identified many more areas where data centre operators want to modernise, including:

Rittal IT service – keeping things running!

Comprehensive support, from concept development to after-sales service

Reliable support for IT systems based on life cycle management

Highly skilled service engineers and infrastructure specialists

In-depth expertise including manufacturer know-how

Web-based and automated service processes

Excellent availability of original spare parts

  • More automation and remote administration
  • Improved local site resilience
  • Increased distributed fail-safe operation/ disaster recovery
  • More extensive use of ready-made solutions
  • Switching from planned to predictive maintenance
  • Changing procurement and supply chain guidelines

Few of these changes seem revolutionary, but taken as a whole they represent a new phase in the maturity of the data centre sector. In line with the long-term trends, data centres are becoming increasingly automated and more resilient, making wider use of remote operation and putting in place close monitoring and supervision systems. The services that keep IT infrastructures operational at all times and ensure they run reliably also play a big part in enabling data centres to better cope with crises. This is where Rittal IT service offers in-depth expertise, rapid response times and the highest standards of support – throughout the entire data centre life cycle.

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