Years ago it was clear that if you had a UPS its purpose was to support a function that is deemed to be critical to the success and mission of the organization. Loss of power will result in the loss of business, loss of profits, loss of productivity, or even the loss of life. Failure to maintain this critical equipment places these functions at risk, not to mention wastes the considerable capital investment for its purchase and installation. Most organizations intuitively understand this, however, things are changing.
Enter the Era of Zero Cost Budgeting:
Unlike traditional expense planning that uses historical data, zero cost budgeting begins each year with no approved expenses and requires the user to justify every item including the amount of that item. While this is highly effective for cost reduction, it can have disastrous consequences on maintenance budgets which are a frequent target. Since your UPS was purchased to support a mission critical function, its reliability will be compromised if scheduled maintenance is not completed.
If you do not maintain your UPS, it’s not a matter of if, but a matter of when it will fail. When the UPS fails your CEO (is upper management a better term here?) will be involved and will want to know:
Who is responsible?
What are we going to do to fix it?
How can we prevent this from ever happening again?
Who is responsible, is the wild card. This is a political hot potato that everyone will try to distance themselves from. Be sure that you’re not the one who has to raise their hand and claim responsibility….
From a financial standpoint, it is not difficult to justify a maintenance program. A typical UPS will cost $3,000.00 per year for annual maintenance. If you take that cost over a 10 year period, the total cost of preventive maintenance would be $30,000.00. If one of the disastrous consequences listed above occurs, that cost could easily be 10-100Xthe cost of maintenance.
Selecting A UPS Service Provider
While it’s clear that UPS maintenance cannot be ignored, it is also critical to select the right provider, or you may risk the disastrous consequences. There are many factors to consider, some of which are detailed below. Cost is certainly a factor, but selecting your service provider based solely upon offering the lowest cost, is a formula for disaster. While the temptation to save money is strong, we all know that quality is rarely found in the lowest cost provider. The selection of the service provider should be an exercise that includes:
- Verifying technical qualifications and capabilities
- Confirming insurance, safety, and regulatory requirements
- Cost determination
When you are verifying qualifications and capabilities of UPS service providers, we recommend you consider the following:
- Safety program – OSHA 10, CPR, PPE
- Guaranteed next day service reports
- Customer portal with real-time web access to all customer data
- Direct field engineers – no subcontractors
- Average field engineer experience 15 years
- Dedicated parts warehouse
- In house training program
- Cloud based, enterprise class, information systems
- All engineers have access to complete service history while onsite
- ISnet World certified