In the business world, productivity is everything and load shedding makes it difficult to do business as usual. Consumers can light candles or order a pizza but for small business owners, these interruptions can seriously affect business productivity and profit.
It's a fact that we can't change - but planning ahead will mean the difference between losing revenue and realising your business goals. We've put together some practical advice to keep you informed on which investments to make to lighten the impact of load shedding.
- Get a generator: The size of generator you'll need depends on your electrical requirements. For, example if you need to power three computers, a kettle and lights, a 2kVA generator should be sufficient. If you have a shop with fridges, air conditioning and a till, you'll need at least a 5kVA generator and if you have a guesthouse with 10 rooms, you'll need approximately a 10kVA generator.
Generators can be mobile or fixed (like an air-conditioning unit). Mobile units can be bought at most home or building stores - just be sure to phone around ahead of time as demand is high at the moment.
- UPS: An Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) works both as a back-up battery for your computer and regulates the amount of power it receives. As soon as the power switches off, the UPS switches on. In short, it makes sure that your equipment performs a proper shutdown until you connect to a generator, preventing, for example, data corruption.
- Back up your data: If your business is computer-based, it's crucial to back up your data often and to put measures in place to keep your data safe. The last thing you want is to lose files or work you've done during this time.
- Make sure your batteries are charged. Be sure to keep your card machine, laptop and phone charged before the power goes off. Alternatively, invest in battery packs or even solar-powered charging solutions.
- Solar-powered solutions: There are many solar-powered options to power your electrical gate, charge your card machine or provide much-needed lighting. You could also go off the grid completely by swapping electrical power for solar power. However, this can be a costly exercise and might not be suitable for all businesses.
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