Has Aberdeen Caught the Green Bug?

Browsing the Aberdeen site, I noticed a benchmark report on Going. Going Green: Planning for The Green IT Ecosystem which caught my eye for three reasons: (1) I hadn’t noticed a study of this specific nature before (and as far as I can tell, it’s their first), (2) last year was the first time I noticed Aberdeen addressing the concept of Green (with their Green Initiatives: Lowering Costs and Increasing Efficiency in the Data Center), and (3) if they build on the research they started with Building a Green Supply Chain, it could revolutionize both their Procurement & Supply and Supply Chain & Logistics practices, which, despite their continued consistency in benchmark quality, could use a little jazzing up as many of the topics they’ve been covering haven’t changed much in the last few years, and the benchmark reports start to become nothing more than updated statistics once you get to the third, fourth, or fifth study on a topic. (While this is great for tracking your progress against your best in class peers, it’s not so great if you are looking for new ideas to take your practice to the next level once you reach best-in-class.)

This latest report, which notes that the global economic downturn and the fluctuations in energy prices emphasize the financial need for organizations to understand and manage their consumption of energy as a key part of their ongoing corporate strategy requires IT to examine its role in the larger organization relative to corporate responsibility and to implement strategies that not only decrease consumption and optimize performance, but also catalyze the proper management and achievement of overall corporate sustainability goals.

IT can play a big role in energy reduction and sustainability efforts as it can:

  • decrease power consumption requirements in the data center and on the desktop (see my posts on Green Your Desktops and Green Your Data Centers for more details and check out the Green IT Savings Template to calculate how much Green IT can save you)
  • decrease the size of the data center
  • decrease the cooling requirements of the data center
  • reuse the heat generated by the data center to heat the surrounding building

The study found that of the best-in-class performers in Green IT,

  • 67% have a formal green/sustainability policy and documented energy efficiency policies
  • 78% include sustainability principles in the requirements for new systems and products
  • 81% use energy efficient components to decrease power consumption
  • 69% use tiered storage to manage the data life-cycle
  • 63% use alternative data center cooling technologies

and this tells us that you can Green Your IT Ecosystem and Save if you

  • make it a mandate to go Green
  • develop and document appropriate procedures and policies
  • take a holistic approach in your operations
  • make green a requirement in everything you source
  • take advantage of new technologies to reduce your energy and operating footprint

Allowing you to sustain the environment and sustain your business at the same time. How can you go wrong?

Want more information on green technology? See my previous posts on greening your data centers, greening your desktops, and calculating your savings with green technology.