The business objective for Intel was to have a
sustainable IT and their goal is to reduce Co2 emissions of IT. It
has set a goal to reduce the emissions by 20% by 2012 from 2007 levels.
is IT enabling Intel to achieve its business objective?
The role of IT in achieving its business
objective is to reduce, reuse and recycle. It also helps in delivering the
benefits across the enterprise and improve its performance. Its main strategy
is to reduce the footprint (termed as reduction project) and to avoid further
escalation in the footprint (termed as avoidance project). For this it has defined three phases by which
it aims to achieve its objective.
assessing the existing projects and quantifying the sustainability impacts of
the projects. The results were used in reducing the environmental reductions.
identifying opportunities outside the purview of IT like building, factories
etc., to reduce the footprints within 12 months by innovative methods.
developing a long-term sustainability research strategy with the help of
R&D program to discover new practices which help in reducing the carbon
footprint across the organization. By doing so it aims in focusing IT to reduce
Intel’s carbon footprint with the use of sustainable IT principles and
Strategic & Operational challenges of planning & managing sustainable
Intel understood that
bringing in a sustainable IT into their business will not only reduce their
carbon footprint but will also reduce their business efficiency and will
enhance their brand image. But influencing their employees and involving them
was a challenging task. The goal of intel was to create an integrated strategy
within the IT of the organization and in Intel.
To make the employees
adopt to sustainable practices, Intel clearly laid out 7 principles ( ie
aspirational statements) along with exemplars on how these principles would be
implemented. These principles were also set in such a way where the
organization can include them in their model and processes used for
encourage involvement and innovation from their employees
In order to have
collaboration and involvement from the employees of the organist ion, Intel
launched an environmental portal. In addition, it also launched an interactive
online community called Green Intel for their employees to facilitate them to
discuss about the topics on sustainability. This advancement of Intel proved to
be a success where twenty hundred plus employees joined the community with 6
months making it the fastest growing group.
increase awareness for adoption
In order to bring the
culture of sustainability into their organization, creating awareness was
essential and indispensable. In pursuance of this, Intel started to campaign
aggressively about sustainability and also had driven adoption. Subsequently,
to gauge the amount of awareness created by Intel, they created baseline to
help in measurement and conducted a study. It showed that the employees are already
efficient and had a strong sustainability mindset.
in managing sustainable IT
The management is
looking out for next strategic sustainable IT as the current sustainable IT in
place works by encouraging employees with low-hanging fruit (that is incentives
and compensation). We cannot keep employees motivated with short-term
motivation that is once the current projects gets completed it will eventually
lead to reduction in employee engagement towards the sustainability. With the
introduction of optimization and changes in technology Intel is heading towards
diminishing returns in projects. This is well explained by the case fact “the
introduction of a private cloud will drive down server counts significantly,
along with associated energy usage”.
Impacts of sustainable IT at Intel
Intel’s sustainable IT
primarily focuses on the optimization of data center, cloud computing and
office infrastructure. It has significant impacts with respect to carbon
footprint as below:
cost savings and reduction in carbon emissions
The emissions reduced by
more than 60% below 2007 levels (goal was to reduce only 20% by 2012 from 2007
levels). Energy cost savings of $5.8 million in 2010 compared to $ 4 million in
2009 were achieved by improving the computing performance and at the same time
reducing carbon footprint.
consolidation & utilization
Improved performance of the computing
environment in terms of storage, network and compute capacity and Intel was
able to provide IT services to additional 11,000 employees with reduced carbon
emissions in IT operations with the help of server consolidation. Under server consolidation
it replaced old servers with new servers that is “one server with the latest
processing technology can replace as many as 10 four-year-old servers” and also
4-year server refresh policy. This policy helped them in saving 28,000 metric
tons in CO2. They also introduced a strategy that has increased the
utilization of servers which saves about 2500 metrics tons of carbon. Further,
optimized server utilization lead to a decrease in the number of servers from
100,000 to 75,000.
changes of hardware
Intel was able to
achieve 70% saving per user by deploying low power laptops instead of desktops
and by deploying 80% laptop within their environment. As SSDs are considered to
save energy and reduce heat while maintaining high performance, Intel deployed
SSDs in company’s laptops instead of conventional hard drives. In this process
of renovating laptops and hard drives Intel achieved an energy saving of over
100 million kilowatt-hours (Kwh).
It has been given that “Intel had over 91,500
employees across 164 sites in 62 countries around the world”. As, employees are
distributed all over the world to coordinate activities among various teams
Intel bound to bear extensive travel expense. With the introduction of video
conferencing it was able to cut down on travel expenses by allowing the meeting
of larger teams and groups with telepresence rooms and small group meetings via
desktop video conferencing. The organization infrastructure underwent a major change
with tripling of number of meeting rooms with video conferencing capabilities
and addition of rooms in 11 new countries. The CO2 emissions were
reduced by 60,000 metric tons by avoiding travel and using video conference and
company was able to save $73 million.