Milind Kulkarni, SVP Corporate Strategy, Government Relationships, Digital & IT, STT GDC India, talks about how the data centre location firm addressed supply disruptions, availability of resources, clearance for imported equipment, and maintained the uptime along with matching updated regulations.
The rise of the Indian economy is establishing a solid platform for global market development. This growth is the result of a strengthened underlying digitization drive, connectivity, a cashless economy, and a thriving start-up environment powered by innovation. A fundamental transformation in how end-users perceive and consume data has occurred, resulting in a game-changing opportunity for all stakeholders in the IT infrastructure ecosystem, with maximum long-term benefits.
Since India is a developing country with a rapid population boom and fast internet, there is constantly a spike in data consumption, leading to projections that it will become the world's fastest data consumer within a few years. However, increased demand brings in an increase in the industry's issues.
Demand for data centre capacity is increasing rapidly, while supply is attempting to keep up. The construction of a data centre is a lengthy process, and disruptions in the supply chain, availability of resources (equipment and people), clearance for imported equipment, and delays in the delivery of electronic components are all adding to the delay. The customers also focus on the stability of the players, as which ones have an overall established ecosystem. Hence, I don't see a challenge of demand in this industry for the next two to three years, but I see supply as a hurdle.", says Milind Kulkarni, SVP Corporate Strategy, Government Relationships, Digital & IT, STT GDC India.
According to Kulkarni, supply is evolving in terms of establishing data centres, ensuring that electricity and other resources are accessible, and guaranteeing that projects include sustainability with the usage of green power. Hence, they have started deploying renewable power via captive power generation structures that offer clean and reliable power in close partnership with established energy players.
Faced with the disruption in the times of the Covid, he says, “One challenge that we had faced during the initial period of Covid was delivering a new green capacity. Initially, we have had days when we were not able to deliver newer projects on the stipulated time which, pre-pandemic, was never a problem. Sometimes the equipment got delayed, sometimes clearances got delayed, which had a cascading impact on the project implementation and delivery.”
Therefore, they are ensuring that while the market is growing fast with the demand, the supply and availability of resources is always at the focus. Thus, the project team has initiated meticulous planning, proactive engagement with customer/partners to crunch the timelines, expedite ordering long-lead items, and are working with partners closely along with engaging with local partners for skilled labors.
“We have executed a lot of actions. We are working with partners and giving them projections of our need for the next 6 to 12 months because the equipment is coming from outside India, and asking them for faster delivery. In some cases, partners have stepped up because of our established business and relationship, and have provided us with different models of some equipment temporarily till the latest equipment becomes available, especially in network and other areas. We are working with different ecosystems to ensure that as much as possible, the deliverables are shared on time.”, he added.
With the spike of this hurdle, it is expected to witness the delivery aspect of the business models evolve. Kulkarni emphasizes that in the next 2-to-3 years, there will be a sudden capacity build-up, which will be two to three times from the current one and will increase the pressure on the top line.
The More in Focus
In addition to the supply disruptions, Kulkarni believes it is also a time to focus on uptime and latency and be quick in making decisions.
“The reason being, sometimes a few ongoing projects may get delayed. But if my current base is not secure and the organization doesn’t perform in these difficult situations, establishing credibility is a major challenge. While ensuring other aspects, establishing business continuity even in these difficult situations and up to a 100% uptime, is the first testimony of any DC company.", he stated.
As the STT GDC India has customers from BFSI Industries and global hyper-scale customers, the few minutes break in their current operations would bring them crores of rupees of revenue loss. It's not just a loss for the current business but it has an impact on the organization's reputation and future business as well.
To solve this problem, during a pandemic, the organization kicked off the BCP (Business Continuity Plan) which was prepared ahead of time for any such situation to ensure smooth functioning and continuity of the businesses for the customers from an operational perspective.
Further, with the introduction of new regulations around data centres, Kulkarni adds, regulatory challenges are an entire area that needs immediate attention where the number of permissions and clearances is needed to be reduced, and a single-window clearance framework is to be brought in action to enable ease of doing business.
He says, there is a need for reliable power infrastructure along with the dark fiber policy which would also enable DC providers to support the burgeoning digital ecosystem of India.
“The Government’s announcement in Union Budget 2022, the attribution of “infrastructure status” to the Data centres is an encouraging stimulus. This announcement will enable concerted efforts on multiple fronts including 5G rollout, infrastructure development, and policy reforms, will help in the creation of a wider and stronger digital ecosystem in India, giving a much-needed fillip to the data canter industry at large.``, he added.
Source : https://cio-economictimes-indiatimes-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/cio.economictimes.indiatimes.com/amp/news/data-center/stt-gdc-india-powered-up-ways-to-solve-data-centers-challenges/89581166
There was a session on digital enterprises at the ongoing Dataquest Digital Leadership Conclave 2021, where CIOs looked at the path taken by the enterprises during the pandemic.
ST Telemedia Global Data Centres (STT GDC) is one of the fastest-growing data centre providers globally, headquartered in Singapore. STT GDC India is a majority-owned subsidiary of ST Telemedia Global Data Centres. The company has been designing, building, and managing data centres in India since 2005.
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