Intel menu +

Yondr Intel  /  General  /  A different approach

A different approach

Written by: Paul Hood / at Yondr

A different approach

Written by: Paul Hood / at Yondr

Let’s go remote, cut our costs and save the client thousands.

I’ve been in the data center industry for over 25 years, working globally within the financial sector. The one thing I’ve always kept in mind throughout? Simplicity. 

A critical environment – no matter if it’s a data center, hospital, bank or petrochemical plant – demands rigorous processes and procedures to be followed with nothing left to chance. 

So the simpler the design and process, the fewer opportunities for errors.

Now, we all know there’s nothing sexy about data center operations. And you only hear about operations when something goes horribly wrong. So as we manoeuvre through the pandemic, whatever the crisis throws at us, we know any new processes and procedures we introduce need to remain simple. 

Yondr as a business funds, designs, delivers, owns and operates hyperscale data centers. We work with some of the biggest technology companies in the world and their standards are matched by our own: we continually challenge conventional thinking to build a tomorrow without constraints.

Turns out that C-19 has taught us a lot about constraints – on both personal and professional levels. We need far less than we thought we did. 

How many people do we really need on site?

Like many data centers, we’ve traditionally operated a continuous maintenance approach with monitoring generally done within the facility itself. Historically, we had a large number of engineers based on site in the eventuality that something failed. C-19 made us question this. 

We started asking, can we undertake remote monitoring combined with non-intrusive, condition-based and predictive maintenance to allow us to schedule maintenance just in time? 

With the right local, specialist subcontractors to undertake maintenance as and when required – rather than the traditional calendar-based maintenance or even fix-on-fail for non-critical items – we knew this had legs.

We started with remote monitoring

Our facility already had the capability for remote monitoring but, until this point, this capability hadn’t been fully utilised. Much like video conferencing, it was previously a nice to have and not the necessity it has now become.

But, prompted by the current situation and implementing rigorous security controls we now have the ability to monitor all critical facilities remotely on a 24/7/365 basis. 

Moving from PPM to infra-red scanning and vibration analysis

As equipment becomes more reliable and more modular, there is an opportunity to look at Yondr’s maintenance regimes. For example, non-intrusive monitoring of equipment through infra-red scanning and vibration analysis.

Again, there is nothing new here but it is not used extensively in data centers. We’re now rapidly reviewing a model that reduces the amount of traditional planned preventative maintenance (PPM) with a non-intrusive, predictive maintenance approach enabled via online monitoring. 

Why not fix-on-fail?

Critical environments are always designed with sufficient resilience to take the plant and equipment out of service for extensive periods of time. This means we can undertake scheduled maintenance without any impact on the client’s equipment. 

Our procurement strategy has always been to use global partners who have a strong local presence in each location, so we have readily available spares and support.

With these sufficient critical spares on site, so why not use those extensive periods to replace a key component that requires changing rather than maintaining the same item over and over with a site-based team? 

Combined with remote monitoring, fix-on-fail is a viable, efficient approach that harnesses local resources, minimises cost and should be seriously considered on non-critical assets, while excluding statutory maintenance and testing of life safety systems from this approach.

It ensures our teams are prepared and responsive, reduces the hands-on maintenance, needs less 24/7/365 manpower and fewer in-person interactions on site.

How can we really take care of our team? 

Since Yondr began, the safety, health and welfare of our people have always been a top priority. 

Operationally, we’ve ramped up the use of two-way radios to keep our team socially distanced but at the same time connected to their fellow team members and a remote security team.  A simple but meaningful alternative that’s benefiting all, so even those lone-working on low-risk tasks aren’t ever really alone. 

‘tomorrow without constraints’

This global pandemic has shown how much excess we have around the fundamentals of operations. But the truth is, smarter, streamlined approaches don’t jeopardise critical environments – they improve them. 

This new approach asks a lot of the industry – the way a traditional contract is shaped would need to change to accommodate these approaches. And that’s what we prepare ourselves for next. Lockdown has been a catalyst for innovation. Will it continue to be?

Seamless data center project delivery starts with a health and safety mindset
There’s one question every client asks us before starting a project: Why should we choose you over the competition? Here’s how we answer that: At Yondr, our speed to delivery is lightning quick. We have extensive in-house capabilities. We’re home to some of the most skilled and experienced people in the industry. 
The right way to approach virtual deals
And there it is! The perfect spot. You could point to it on a map. That’s where we’ll build your data center. If only it were as easy as that...
Yondr’s framework for failsafe security
Data centers are now part of our critical infrastructure. They are integral to the daily operations of government, business and society at large, as important to our lives as energy and water supply.
The democratisation of tech holds the answers to one of our industry’s biggest challenges
The democratisation of tech is opening up the data center market - an industry once reserved for highly skilled specialists - and making it accessible to more people than ever before.
Setting sail: The astonishing skill and strength of character needed to compete in a solo race around the world
Yondr is sponsoring sailor Pip Hare to compete in the Vendée Globe race, one of the world’s toughest endurance events. We asked Pip to share her story as she enters her final weeks of training for what promises to be an incredible journey. Over to you Pip!
Peter Jones, talks European data center market with DatacenterHawk
Yondr’s CDO, Pete Jones, sits down with David from DatacenterHawk, to share thoughts on the data center market in Europe.
From apprentice to global operations director — how an apprenticeship changed my life
Born and raised in London’s East End, I definitely wasn’t the smartest kid. I applied for 50-odd positions and was granted three interviews, one of which was for a technician’s apprenticeship with the Post Office.
Critical spaces from scratch in a year – how Yondr does it
There’s no such thing as being a single moment late. If a data center isn’t completed on time, it will be delayed for months or there will be serious consequences for other projects no amount of money can fix. 
The evolution of data centers / data center development across the decades
The phenomenon of the data center has played its full part in creating the interconnected and smaller world that we now find ourselves in. Data centers have a history going back to the mid-1940s when the first specially created computer rooms housed large military machines that were set to work on specific data tasks. 
The pace of hybrid adoption
The paper sets out the very clear and compelling case for hybrid cloud adoption and recommends how companies and teams need to evolve to get their decision making right, choosing which workloads to put where, when the fork in the road arrives.
What clients are asking now
We are now several weeks into COVID-19 lockdown measures. The initial wave of enforced changes to work and living routines is behind us, and the world is slowly adjusting to the idea that we’re in this for the long haul.
My first 30 days of COVID-19
It was a fast decision made by the senior leadership team on the day, based on the facts we had. We pushed it out via all our internal channels. We recorded a video explaining the decision, sent everyone an email, published blog posts and sent SMS messages, so everyone knew. With 20/20 hindsight, I’m glad we did.
PTC 2020 Honolulu
Yondr attended the Pacific Telecommunications Council in Honolulu, Hawaii for the first time this year. As venues go, this was one we were quite excited by!
DICE Local – data center investment conference
Infrastructure investors are in part expanding their scope to support the sector, but not in full. This is proposed as being owed to infrastructure such as roads, tunnels and bridges with “tolls” going one data centers, we typically pay penalties for poor performance.
Microsoft’s take on health and safety
Just out of a great session at DCD Dallas by Doug Mouton of Microsoft that was short, sweet and undeniably compelling. 
Real estate change…does it have to be hard?
Picking up a copy of the FT while travelling back from Asia last week, I was struck by the notion of the editor. To secure the front and back pages, and inside cover with an announcement that our system and markets need to change deeply resonated with me.
DCD Singapore: Yondr’s first foray in Asia
Having just returned from a week in Singapore I am now taking stock of the talks, meetings and people I met over the last few days.
DCD Singapore – sustainable data centers
The provision of a recognised scoring system for data centers (such as LEED) could be a ‘powerful’ (very poor pun) addition to our sector. We as developers, operators, builders and tenants must embrace such initiatives.
Microsoft’s take on energy
Ever wondered how hyperscale end users see the energy world? I was lucky today to get some great insights today from Jim Collins at Microsoft during his fireside chat at DCD San Francisco.

Like what you see?

Don’t miss out on future Intel. Sign up now to receive our latest content straight to your inbox.