Milldam Public Relations has announced the launch of its Mission Critical Crisis Communications Practice, the first crisis communications practice dedicated to the data center ecosystem. The new service is being launched in response to the lack of preparedness in the data center industry when responding to negative events tied to data center operations. 

From ride sharing apps to air travel and e-commerce, critical infrastructure plays a prevalent role in the daily lives of most people, driving the need for data center operators, and the vendors servicing them, to have the communications tools available when there is a downtime episode or other cataclysmic event that is linked to data center operations.

The cost to an organization’s reputation can be irreparable and haunt the organization for months and even years after the event is resolved. In this era of digital proliferation, critical infrastructure providers need the tools to respond to negative news and take actionable steps to alleviate the concerns of all stakeholders, while maintaining a unified message following an event.

“Having a crisis communications plan and being able to implement is akin to an insurance policy for your organization’s reputation,” said Adam Waitkunas, president of Milldam Public Relations. “Over the last several years, we’ve seen numerous critical infrastructure providers and others throughout the data center ecosystem with a lack of communications preparedness when a serious event takes place. With MPR’s nearly fifteen years of experience in the critical infrastructure space, we are well positioned to assist data center operators and vendors with a plan, and have the bandwidth to navigate organizations through a crisis while appropriately engaging relevant stakeholders.” 

According to an article in Data Center Knowledge, an hour of data center downtime on average costs a provider $260,000. While that’s a large number, it does not take into account the often immeasurable costs to the company’s reputation and credibility within the industry. Getting in front of a negative story while keeping the lines of communication open for all stakeholders, and ensuring that employees are not going rogue can help lessen the blow to corporate reputation and standing in the market. For example, a recent downtime event involving a large bank caused great confusion when different reports about the cause of the downtime issue were spreading throughout the press and online forums.