Risk – /rısk/
“The possibility or chance of loss, danger or injury.”

It is highly likely that your business has undergone a period of change recently. While times have been uncertain and sometimes stressful, the silver-lining is that you’ve likely honed your business continuity plan along with your risk identification and mitigation skills.

Countless factors can introduce risk, or modify already identified risks. But it’s not often that we’re affected to such a degree – and have so little control with business as usual practices impacted by regulation.

With so many organisations on the pathway to recovery, or managing significant operational changes, there are several easily-taken steps that can de-risk and provide assurance of a vital business factor – your consistent supply of power.

Out with the old

Most organisations are well-aware of ways to work smarter, introduce automation and streamline processes – but are so busy with business as usual work that commencing with the upheaval of significant change is easily deferred. 

In many cases, disruptions such as working from home have provided the time and headspace needed to step back, re-evaluate value propositions and analyse operational processes.  Over recent months many businesses have been forced to fast track their digital transformation.

New technologies can improve productivity and profitability, though one consistency for all these new tools is the requirement of clean, uninterrupted power.

Digital conferencing, enhanced business analytics, improved process automation, faster and more accurate machines and increasingly mobile workforces cannot deliver maximum value if they are disconnected.

If technology is connected it should be protected and as we enter the winter months, the risk of power disturbances increases by 35% due to bad weather with infrastructure and network events introducing additional risk.

The best way to ensure that you can count on your technology is to safeguard its operation with affordable UPS solutions that provide an easy, and often user installable, mitigation to this risk.

In with the new

Physical premises can be protected through security alarms and camera systems – which need power. Operation and process systems can be monitored and controlled remotely – requiring power. Workforces can work remotely and be managed and engaged with online – which requires power at their homes and supporting the central business systems.

Remote access to your central systems is more necessary than ever and many businesses have seen the sense in the introduction of new technologies. This widespread move to digital and online tools is perhaps another silver-lining of recent events.

The deployment of a remote-monitored UPS-based backup power solution is a vital step in ensuring the equipment and infrastructure that supports these functions is available when needed. But identifying and mitigating new risks is a similarly critical aspect of leveraging new technologies.

Famously, US department store, Target fell victim to a sophisticated hack that compromised the data of its shoppers. 40 million debit and credit accounts were stolen during a breach. The initial intrusion into the Target network was traced back to stolen credentials from a refrigeration and air conditioning contractor that had the ability to remotely access the equipment for maintenance.

This is a sobering reminder that all connected devices on a business network expose an organisation to data security and cybercrime risk. Hackers only require a small chink in an organisation’s armour to gain entry.

If you’ve taken advantage of the many innovative technical solutions available to your business, then ensuring all the connected devices on your network are protected with strong cyber security protocols is an essential part of de-risking in this new world.

Downtime Dilemma

Analysis of thousands of installations across millions of operating hours has shown that UPS systems that receive preventive maintenance twice a year experience fewer failures. Not just fewer, but twenty times fewer failures!

Your critical business activities and thousands of dollars of equipment depend on a clean power supply, and most businesses will be painfully aware of what loss of production or reduced output can cost.

Some two-thirds of downtime events are preventable, with insufficient maintenance being one of the main causes. It’s not enough to buy a UPS, install it in the corner and hope that it works when needed – good system design and preventative maintenance is crucial to achieving optimal performance. 

Consider a case where an older UPS has a component failure and switches to bypass where it can no longer protect the critical load. Everything would appear to be in working order for months until a mains power supply fault happens. At this point the UPS will provide no backup protection.

It cannot be emphasised enough that your UPS backup power solution requires consistent attention in order to operate as expected, when required.

Making Lemonade

We’re having to reimagine business and the new future. We’re welcoming technology and harnessing the benefits of innovation. We’re aware that there will be new risks to identify and mitigate. We’ve acknowledged that reliable, continuous power is a crucial ingredient – so how do you get started with safeguarding your operation for the future?

Backup power solutions come in various shapes and sizes and can be tailored to any business or budget. Working with UPS specialists with multiple brand options provides the best possible solution for a fixed budget. Other options could be adopting a “pay as you grow” scalable design or leasing equipment.

With revenues constrained through April and May, many New Zealand businesses may choose to sweat their assets for a little while longer and seek to repair rather than replace. This is a viable option, but the risk profile must be understood and mitigated by proactive rather than reactive repair.

Getting advice, system design and regular maintenance from a local expert is the key to assured power supply.

The Government is encouraging both consumers and businesses to support New Zealand companies and help strengthen the economy, however there are more specific reasons to choose a local power quality expert.

With our borders closed, in-country technical support, good stocks of products and parts along with expert knowledge of the NZ marketplace and power quality landscape will deliver significant value to your tailored power solution.

Sometimes risks simply escalate into failures. All the mitigation in the world cannot protect against natural disasters for instance. But knowing that you’ve partnered with experts on your doorstep who can be at your site, getting you back online within hours is the kind of safeguarding that goes beyond good system design or equipment selection.

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