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Fall Is In The Air…Time To Shed The Jackets

September 24, 2015

Fall is my favorite time of year. As the weather turns colder, I can finally stop wearing a jacket at my desk.
Let me explain. I work in an office building just south of Salt Lake City’s airport. It’s a fairly typical building. I work on the fourth floor of our four story building. And our building is a call center. That means that we are really good at “maximizing space.” In other words, we can fit a lot of bodies and computers into a space. In its current configuration, our building has call center agents on the first, second and third floors. The fourth floor used to house agents, but we converted it to office space. And that’s the problem. When you move cubicles into an area that used to be a call floor, you get fewer people per square foot.


Here’s a view of the space where the Project Managers and Technical Account Managers sit.


 It used to house about 200 call center agents and their computers. Currently it houses about 40 admin staff. And here is a shot of the floor next to my desk.



Data centers do not need heaters. They come with hundreds and thousands of tiny little heaters.


So, what’s the problem with my desk? The problem is those heating registers. Or more specifically the cooling registers. Two hundred agents means two hundred computers and 400 monitors. The space was designed to keep 200 people comfortable during even the hottest summer days.


Now, we have about 50 computers and maybe 120 monitors. As the temperature outside heats up, our building cooling system cranks into high gear. The first three floors house 600 agents, with their computers and monitors. The hotter it gets outside, the cooler it gets inside. On floors one through three that evens out. On the fourth floor? Welcome to Christmas in July. We are missing the presents and the snow, but the temperature is perfect. . .for a sleigh ride. Not only would we wear coats at our desks, occasionally, I needed to walk outside to get the feeling back in my fingers.


But, the weather outside is cooling off. The leaves are changing colors. College football is back. And our building AC is not running as hard as it did in July and August. I can finally take my coat off at my desk.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday at 7:00 AM Mountain Time. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren. 

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