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Software cos in Mumbai hit

Neha Kapoor

Most companies have reported loss of man hours and an adverse impact on day-to-day business though critical projects were by and large unaffected thanks to UPS systems.

MUMBAI, May 23

WORK came to a standstill at several software companies in Mumbai on Thursday as the city's suburbs suffered a complete power cut for almost six hours of the day.

And, today more than any other day, would have truly tested the much talked about business continuity plans in software companies in the city! Most companies have reported loss of man hours and an adverse impact on day-to-day business though critical projects were by and large unaffected thanks to UPS systems.

Says Dr C.M Dwivedi, Vice-President, Human Resources, Datamatics Ltd, which is based in the Santacruz Electronics Export Promotion Zone (SEEPZ), ``we have lost at least 6,000 man hours today due to the power failure. We are in the process of debating how this loss will be made up; people will either be requested to come in on holidays or may be we'll cut our lunch time by 15 to 20 minutes. In any case, key projects were not affected as systems needed for those were run on UPS.''

``At i-flex Solutions we managed half the day using the UPS system and asked people associated with all non-important projects to leave. The UPS system was used only for key production support teams needed for global clients. The loss will now be made up by working extra hours later,'' said a company spokesperson.

Work at another company situated in SEEPZ, Mastek too was affected but according to Mr Amish Shah, Assistant Manager, Systems Integration, ``the loss would be more on the back-end support and administration side and not for any billable business.''

For Mastek, its Continuity of Business (CoB) plan saved the day. ``We were able to avoid any loss of man hours on the development front because of the CoB plan that was implemented almost immediately. The plan takes care of any kind of exigency by detailing exactly who would do what in such a situation and it also ensured support from sufficient back up infrastructure. At the end of the day, software deliveries work on deadlines we are glad we were able to manage,'' Mr Shah added.

Said a senior company official with another Mumbai-based software firm, ``a power cut in Mumbai is highly unexpected . In fact, when we pitch for projects that's one of the reasons we cite to clients for not taking business to other cities which suffer from rampant power failures. But today definitely puts a different spin on that one ! ''

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