From an uninterruptible power supply to making sure you can work offline, we’ll show you how to be a prepper and create a Plan B when the lights go out.
It is easy to forget how much we depend on power supply. For the most part, we just take it for granted until a power outage hits. As much as we don’t want it to happen, loadshedding will continue to be a part of our reality — for the foreseeable future, at least.
You may feel hopeless when you’re left in the dark, but there’s so much you can do to stay ahead of a planned power outage. Explore below some practical steps you can take to help protect your equipment and make productive use of your downtime.
At a glance, here’s what to do before a power outage:
Download and print out your city’s loadshedding schedule then post it on your noticeboard or any place where employees can easily take note of the allocated area slots. To keep on top of planned blackouts, download the available load shedding apps or register to receive notifications via SMS or Google Alerts.
Remind employees to save their work – either in the cloud or on a disk drive – before load shedding kicks in. If any important deadlines coincide with the load shedding period (when, for example, the power is scheduled to be down between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m but a project is due 5 p.m.), encourage employees to finish up on the assignment well ahead of schedule.
A laptop computer is the clear choice if you want your workers to stay productive during load shedding. If you can’t afford to buy a laptop for every employee, ask them to bring their own devices to the office. This way, they can get some work done offline or connect to the internet via their cell phone’s hotspot. Just make sure that laptops are fully charged to last them through the period of downtime.
A sudden loss of power can result in a system crash on your computers, which may damage or corrupt the operating system and files. To prevent this from happening, turn off all PCs by initiating the shut down sequence a couple of minutes before load shedding is set to occur.
Aside from providing them with laptops, there are other ways to ensure that your employees can still get some work done during load shedding.
Surge protector: a device designed to keep your electronic appliances safe from damage caused by a spike in voltage when the power comes back on.
Uninterruptible power supply (UPS): an apparatus that provides emergency power to your computers, just long enough so that you can save your work and safely shut down the PC.
Backup energy solution: a battery-powered system connected to a generator or grid- tied/off grid solar system that automatically supplies your business with energy during a blackout.
Lighting: Keep flashlights and batteries in places where they will be easy to find in the dark.
Prepping your business for a power outage is just one of those things you can’t skip out on. To make sure the next blackout causes as little inconvenience as possible, this guide will help you develop a response plan — from keeping employees productive to finding an alternative energy solution.