An uninterrupted power supply (UPS) ensures that your company has electricity no matter what outside events interfere with its functionality. Unlike your standard home appliances, the networks and systems at a place of business are more susceptible to larger problems, making your UPS one of the more important components in your electrical system. Plus, a single outage can alter your course of business in ways you may not have even considered. If you’ve been neglecting either acquiring or maintaining your UPS, it may be time to reconsider your priorities.
The most obvious effect of a power outage is that of interrupted business. When your employees can no longer access their work, they’ll need to push back their schedules by however long the power is out. Your customers and clients are unlikely to be forgiving if their schedules are pushed back too — especially if they have deadlines of their own to meet. In addition, if the disconnection affects your public website, frustrated customers can cause your public reputation to suffer. This may sound dramatic, but it’s not unusual for power shutdowns to happen during peak business hours. So, if you’re having a major e-commerce sale and the website goes down within the first hour, it can be a huge letdown for both you and your customers.
When employees are interrupted from their work, it’s not always a seamless transition after the power has been turned on. People crowd around each other’s desks to gossip or to discuss the outage. They lose their train of thought or need to redo some of the initial work when they come back. If power outages or network failures are happening often enough, they may question the legitimacy of the company or become less productive on the job. Employees are the glue that keeps a business together and giving them the tools they need to succeed is really the bare minimum for an employer to hit.
The systems of your business are unlikely to respond well to a hard shutdown. A normal shutdown involves running certain processes so the system can spring back to life again (as good as new). But a hard shutdown can cause such a shock that it ultimately results in data corruption. After that, the device may actually become unbootable. If you’re concerned about the data stored on your hard drive and networks, then a UPS power backup is of the utmost importance. Even a second of disruption has been known to have negative effects on everything from ISPs to data centers to wireless telecommunication networks.
What Does a UPS Really Do?
A UPS ensures that your business can continue operating as normal in a power outage. Even if other companies are in darkness around you, your company can continue to thrive. In the case of extremely adverse events (e.g., a major storm or other natural disasters), it gives you the option of shutting your systems down correctly so there’s no chance of file corruption. But a UPS does more than just safeguard you against power interruptions. It also gives you enough power to convert to your permanent backup supply if necessary, so you can work off generators or other power sources if need be. It gives your company a reliable source of power so they can power through their workload.
Types of UPS Systems
An uninterrupted power supply may be one of several types of systems. For example, a standby UPS will only be triggered if the primary power shuts down. In the case of a line-interactive UPS, the system will cause the electrical flow to change in the case of a power outage. This system is recommended for businesses who need a high level of filtering to ensure there are no major interruptions. (A medium-sized business may need a line-interactive to handle the full weight of their networks.) Finally, a double conversion UPS features a backup battery charged by the AC input. In turn, this will power the output inverter so companies can switch from one source to the other without so much as a single glitch.
A Question of Costs
So, the question for all businesses is how much money and time they’ll lose if they choose not to invest in the right UPS system. A small company with only a few employees may believe they can handle the risk, but what happens if their data is corrupted? Or if the failure results in an indirect security breach? If customers perceive a business as unreliable, how many people will they tell about their experience? A power outage of 20 minutes or less may seem like a small hiccup in the grand scheme of things, but these happenings have ripple effects that companies may not be ready to absorb.
There’s no doubt that technology has become more resilient in the past few years to unexpected events, but business owners may be surprised at just how vulnerable their equipment is to a power interruption. What’s more is that a hard drive or a system may seem as though it’s in working order when it’s actually had some type of file or data corruption occur. To avoid this fate, IT decision-makers need to be willing to invest in backup plans. A UPS shows employees and leaders alike that the work they do is far too valuable to lose.
Are you unsure if your power backup system is setup for with functional and fiscal optimization? Contact us to get a free power audit, or to learn more about UPS offerings we can provide to your organization.