Global IT managers know that continually adding massive data centers around the world, in some cases simultaneously, requires potentially thousands of technicians to build and maintain them. Consider that building a single new data center requires as many as 200–300 IT technicians to be working on-site at any given time, with over 100 remaining on-site after the build is complete. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Technology Engagement Center estimates that a typical large data center generates nearly 1,700 local jobs during the construction phase and then 150+ jobs per year to operate it.
The sheer volume of work and the global shortage of skilled workers can be significant stressors for hyperscale IT managers. Keeping up with the tremendous pace of growth and innovation is challenging even in ordinary times. The IT infrastructure demands experienced, seasoned technicians. The growing scarcity of these workers in the marketplace combined with challenges presented by a global pandemic has created the perfect storm. And, without the ability to mobilize a global workforce, construction grinds to a halt.
IT leaders, then, are faced with significant questions: How can I possibly find and attract the resources to execute multiple data center projects around the world, particularly in underserved areas? Should I rely exclusively on local talent and, if so, how can I effectively train them? How do I monitor and maintain consistent processes and outcomes at every site?
Black Box has developed a better way forward. The traditional approach is to source local contractors and talent at each site. This has several inherent problems. It's nearly impossible to stay ahead of demand, especially in the post-pandemic labor shortage world of today. Quality and skill set requirements have become nice-to-haves instead of must-haves. And, talent, once trained, isn't necessarily transferrable to the next site.
Instead of the traditional approach to sourcing local talent at each site, we've invested in our own talent program
Black Box owns and operates strategically located, authorized training facilities that serve Europe and the United States, with more global training centers on the way. These facilities enable us to onboard, train, and certify hundreds of technicians simultaneously at multiple locations. Most importantly, Black Box trainers are authorized to conduct certification courses in a variety of industry standards. In fact, select Black Box trainers are members of an elite group of global BICSI Certified Trainers qualified to train professionals of all levels in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) codes, standards, and industry best practices. Through these trainers, Black Box delivers the same world-class installation curriculum that BICSI offers in its own classrooms including:
Provides entry-level installers with the background, knowledge, and basic skills needed to function safely and effectively as part of a cabling installation team.
Expands the installers' industry knowledge and offers two tracks — one for copper installation and one for fiber. The course culminates in an exam to become a BICSI designated installer of copper (INSTC) or fiber (INSTF).
Provides the necessary skill set for a structured cabling systems technician including troubleshooting copper and optical fiber cable installations; project planning and implementation at the technician level; site safety; site surveys; blueprint reading; bonding and grounding (earthing); and fire-stopping practices with an advanced-level emphasis on planning and implementation. Upon completion, the technician is prepared to take the BICSI Technician® (TECH) exam and become a certified technician.
Covers OSP design and installation and culminates in the BICSI OSP certification. The design portion includes planning, development, and documentation of workable and/ or buildable OSP cabling systems. The installation content focuses on procurement, deployment, and verification of an OSP design emphasizing the ability to design aerial, underground, and direct-buried infrastructures connecting buildings to Information and Communication Technology (ICT) systems.
Registered Telecommunications Project Manager
Emphasizes project management concepts and tools that are critical to the outcome of any successful project, including budgeting; stakeholder management and communication; project and schedule planning, as well as system testing and overall commissioning. Upon successful completion of the exam, attendees acquire the coveted BICSI RTPM certification.
Registered Communications Distribution Design
Addresses the creation, planning, integration, execution, and detail-oriented project management of telecommunications and data communications technology. Those who successfully complete the course and the exam are awarded the RCDD certification — the most prestigious of all BICSI credentials.
Find more information on our Data Center services here.
This blog is part of a series on Data Center services and solutions. You may also be interested in:
Core Value: The Importance of Your Data Center Project Management Team
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Black Box® is a trusted IT solutions provider delivering cutting-edge technology products and world-class consulting services to businesses across the globe in every industry. The breadth of our global reach and depth of our expertise accelerate customer success by bringing people, ideas, and technology together to solve real-world business problems.