Best Practice: Upgrading a data center’s UPS system

US-Web hosting provider Online Tech recently upgraded its UPS units at the company’s 32,500 square-foot data center in Flint, Michigan. In an interview with the Web Host Industry Review, Online Tech director of operations Jason Yaeger shares the knowledge he has acquired during the upgrade.

The company has a mixed clientele of businesses that offer such critical services as live monitoring of brain and spinal surgery and e-commerce systems. None of these could afford a minute of downtime. Online Tech assigned a team of eight employees, as well as additional vendors and contractors to prepare and perform the entire replacement of the UPS units.

“While the selection of the UPS units themselves was critical,” said Jason Yaeger,  “the most important and challenging part of the whole process was choosing the highest quality human resources who could help us accomplish our goal of 100 percent uptime and be the very best expertise to have on hand in the event of anything unforeseen. […] While we took every precaution, we also planned for the worst. The entire management team was on standby with comprehensive communication plans in place to reach out to our clients through email, text, and phone just in case something unexpected came up.”

And here are Jason Yaegers recommendations for a successful UPS upgrade:

  • Do all of the due diligence and homework.
  • Talk to potential vendors face-to-face while the project is taking shape. Don’t rely on a vendor’s reputation from five years ago.
  • Invest the time to visit critical vendors. See and touch the actual equipment you’re going to trust your data center to.
  • Keep an open mind and keep your primary objective in mind. Find the partners you can count on.
  • Request detailed documentation of the procedural methods from all vendors under consideration. Review the plan with all stakeholders in your company for feedback and to gather any additional questions.
  • Communicate with stakeholders and clients repeatedly. Don’t be afraid to share the worst case scenario. Be realistic with yourself, your company, and your clients.

WHIR | Inside a Data Center Upgrade: Online Tech’s New UPS System»

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