For data centers, uptime is mandatory, even if the buses and trains aren't running on time. That's an issue on the minds of data center in operators in London, which may see its transit system tested by the huge crowds expected for the 2012 Summer Olympics. The data center team at Interxion has come up with a solution that will ensure that its London tech staff can be on site to keep things running smoothly throughout the Games.
Interxion today unveiled "sleeping pods" at its London data center campus, allowing staff to sleep amongst the racks to ensure that the facility will be fully staffed throughout the Games. allowing engineering staff to stay on site 24/7 should congestion on the travel and road networks become too severe, making it difficult for critical staff to travel to and from the site in a timely fashion.
"Due to the nature of our business we need to be ready for all eventualities and while we are excited to have the Olympics in London we also need to be sure that we can continue to offer the highest level of resilience to our customers," said Greg McCulloch, UK Managing Director of Interxion. "The installation of the sleeping pods is another great example of Interxion putting resilience and uptime at the forefront of everything it does."
Interxion's London data center campus houses some of the UK’s most important digital businesses, including financial services, online retail and entertainment firms delivering critical services to to millions of people.
While staff in many industries might object to a plan that expects them to sleep in their office, data center firms have a primary calling of keeping their facilities operational at all times, and assuring customers that they've taken every precaution to keep their data available and safe.
The sleeping chambers were designed by UK company Podtime, and made in Battersea, South West London. The pods are designed for modular construction and can be stacked up to two levels high for economy of space. The units are designed for workplaces to provide staff an area for "power naps" but can be customized for overnight stays.
"Everyone working in central London will feel the challenging side-effect of the Games, and the organizations they work for will face operational issues with employees being stuck in queues rather than being in the office," said Jon Gray, Director at Podtime. "We see the sleeping pods as a good cheap solution for those ‘staff-critical’ companies which must have 24/7 cover for vital procedures."