A report by the Institute for Supply Management found that nearly 75% of companies surveyed had reported supply chain disruption during the pandemic, writes John Lewis, Managing Director, Aggreko Africa.

While data centre supply chains have not been as seriously impacted as many other sectors, there remains a need for companies to shore up the proverbial defences as they approach 2021, and find new ways of securing their supply chains as the pandemic rages on. Lead times will continue to lengthen, delays will continue to plague systems and companies, and planning will prevent these challenges from significantly impacting business and data centre performance.

For data centre operators and service providers, this is the right time to prepare for potential disruption and delays over the next few months. This is particularly important for those companies that are undertaking major projects or are managing the uptime of critical equipment in essential sectors. For these companies, supply chain limitations have to be managed incredibly tightly to mitigate risk. And one area that can potentially shift the disruption dynamic is outsourcing.

Yes, outsourcing.

Why outsourcing is a radical transformation

For many companies, the idea of outsourcing alternative solutions while they wait for their supply chains to catch up is not the first one that they would consider. Yet this is perhaps one of the most versatile and efficient strategies that any company can employ to minimise the risk of right now, and any potential risk that may emerge tomorrow.  Outsourced solutions can be implemented on any site to ensure that infrastructure projects or cooling requirements are not impacted by unexpected supply chain challenges at any time.

The benefit of outsourcing is that it can be implemented to suit your unique business requirements. You just need the right strategy that is aligned with the business needs on an immediate, intermediate, or long-term basis. If you have already planned for what you need in the event of an emergency, and you have a trusted partner on board, then you know that you have systems in place for when the unexpected happens. This level of strategic planning can be used by data centre providers and operators to ensure that infrastructure projects or cooling systems are not impacted at any point during a crisis.

Planning for the long term

There has been a global increase in construction and maintenance projects, particularly around significant data centre projects. As the building work ramps up, so will the demand for equipment and solutions that will allow for these projects to meet deadlines. However, there remain concerns around the supply chain and its ability to keep up with construction demand.

This again is where an outsourcing solution can make a huge difference to the project’s bottom line. Instead of the spiralling costs associated with unexpected delays, companies can use outsourcing solutions to keep facilities in operation while they wait for components and critical equipment to arrive. The benefit is that these outsourcing cooling and power solutions are flexible in terms of scale and output so you can adapt their usage to suit your site and requirements. This also allows for a degree of flexibility around time frame changes and further unplanned issues.

Outsourcing solutions can make all the difference between operations continuing unfettered during a crisis or coming to a crashing and expensive halt. This was a situation felt deeply by many companies during the pandemic, and it is one that a few care to repeat. Over the past year, Aggreko has continued to operate at full capacity, providing companies with outsourcing solutions that are tailored to their situations and budgets. The company has stepped in with answers to problems that could have seriously impacted on data centre provider capacity and service and has evolved its outsourcing portfolio to suit the ongoing market demand for versatile and relevant solutions.

As the world faces a lengthy battle with lockdowns, supply chain challenges, and an ever-present pandemic, some things can be controlled. With Aggreko as a trusted partner, you can prepare for the uncertain and ensure that your systems are ready for whatever the future holds.

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