Originally published at Greater Springfield in April 2020

While the country goes into lockdown and businesses take their services online, there is one group of people working quietly behind the scenes to ensure it is business as usual for all.

Data centres are responsible for the management of internet and data capacity across the globe and are now working tirelessly to ensure the transition from the workplace to the “home office” is as seamless as possible.
Demand for cloud services for work, school, entertainment and communication purposes have all increased dramatically due to the COVID-19 situation and has meant data centre staff everywhere are all hands-on deck to manage the spike in internet and data usage.

Greater Springfield’s Polaris Data Centre General Manager Adam Gibson said he and his team had been flat out keeping up with demand for their services.

“Data centres, just like water and power, are essential to peoples’ lives, so we’re responsible for helping maintain liveability during this current situation,” Mr Gibson said.

“We’re the people behind the scenes delivering the base infrastructure for IT providers which keeps businesses and people going.

“Across the board there’s been more than a 30 per cent increase in internet connectivity into major networks, so we’ve seen the Telcos having to come in to install new equipment, to keep the network functioning.”

Mr Gibson said while the situation had come with its challenges, like all data centres, Polaris was well prepared and equipped to withstand situations such as a natural disaster or pandemic.

“Crisis or not, we’re always assessing all of the major works, what’s a risk and what’s not and making sure that we’re across everything going on in the network,” he said.

“Some of the challenges you see in disasters are due to people not being able to come to work due to blocked roads, etc.

“This time around it’s more around the human piece and trying to reduce the amount of people coming through the door, while still maintaining the support needed, so we’re working but protecting to prevent the risk of infecting staff.

“For us this is basically our business continuity plan in action and while it may be an unprecedented event, we have a lot of mitigation and processes in place to ensure we have enough human capacity and equipment so that we can continue to operate our business for all our clients.”