The research summarizes 1,000 responses to 80 questions about ICT Sustainability policies, behavior and technologies. The data was collected through an online survey of CIOs and ICT managers in large IT-using organizations across industry sectors in seven countries: Australia, Canada, China, India, New Zealand, The United Kingdom (UK) and the United States of America (USA).
This is the second Benchmark Reportand from this year’s findings there is a continuing relative lack of maturity in ICT Sustainability. It is also clear there is a direct relationship between the visibility of ICT power costs and an organization’s overall awareness of ICT Sustainability issues.
The Index across all countries and all industry sectors declined slightly between 2010 and the current results (from 56.4 to 54.3 per cent), which indicates that organizations may be losing their focus on ICT energy efficiency and ICT projects that were implemented have failed to institutionalize changes across the organization.
More than half the respondents had no understanding of how much power ICT consumes, with only one in seven ICT divisions including the cost of ICT’s power consumption in their departmental budgets. For the very small proportion (14.2 per cent) where ICT has control and responsibility for ICT-specific power consumption, their performance was significantly higher.
Larger organizations which have more sophisticated ICT functions and generally more advanced ICT Sustainability practices are more likely to be aware of the cost of ICT’s energy consumption. Organizations with more than 5,000 employees have an average score of 61.7 compared with just 50.7 for those with 100 to 499 employees.
With the results of this second multi-country survey, Alison Rowe, Fujitsu’s Global executive director, sustainability, said, “Not only is there a relative lack of maturity in ICT Sustainability policies, practices and technologies but the overall Index has declined slightly from 2010, indicating that some of the buzz has gone from Green ICT.
“Many organizations have reached a plateau with ICT Sustainability. They may have tackled the easy initiatives, such as PC power management or telecommuting, but the problem is that even these have declined in performance.
“The survey reveals that the single most important reason ICT departments don’t prioritize ICT Sustainability, or feel they have a compelling reason to do so, is the lack of visibility of ICT power consumption. Until this data can be quantified, change cannot be measured and successes cannot be recognized.
“ICT is pervasive in business and extends far beyond the data centre or the ICT department. ICT Sustainability is the responsibility of all of us, be it end users, lines of business, the procurement function, senior management or our customers, we all have a role to play. This Benchmarking Report provides powerful information which can be leveraged for positive change,” Rowe said.
Best Performing Country
The best performing country of the seven surveyed is Canada, with an overall ICT Sustainability Index of 60.3. Canada, the UK 58.3 and the USA 56.0 perform above average, while Australia, New Zealand, India and China perform below the average.
Best Performing Sector
The ICT/Communications/Media sector is the lead industry at 58.4 and Manufacturing the lowest at 51.2, except in Canada. As with the findings of the 2010 survey, the relativities between industry sectors are generally consistent across different countries; the same industries tend to do better or worse in all countries.
Approach to Lifecycle Matures
The Lifecycle component performs the best at 60.6, as it had in the previous Benchmark Report, with most organizations being relatively mature when it comes to practices in this area, particularly in the disposal of consumables and IT equipment. Lifecycle is followed by the two operational components under the control of the ICT department, End User at 57.3 and Enterprise at 56.8, where the techniques and technologies of ICT Sustainability are best understood and most advanced.
Australia’s ICT Sustainability performance ranks below Canada, the UK, and the USA and slightly ahead of New Zealand, India, and China. Its overall rating of 52.8 is just below the international average.
Australiawas one of the four countries also surveyed in 2010, when its Index was 53.9. Its marginal decline this year indicates that ICT Sustainability in Australia has lost momentum. Australia’s performance in the End User Index component is of particular concern as this is where many quick wins can be found.
Chris Seale, director, sustainability for Australia and New Zealand, said: “Australia’s significant decline in the End User category, from 62.3 to 51.8, indicates that many local ICT operations may be suffering from ‘green fatigue’ or initiatives have failed to become institutionalized. This is further supported by Australia’s very low visibility of ICT power consumption where less than one per cent of ICT departments are responsible for the cost of ICT’s power consumption.”
The breakdown by industry sector in Australia is similar to that in other countries: there are no industry sectors where Australia performs significantly better or worse than the international average for that industry. The Australian ICT/Communications/Media industry sector performs the best overall, with the Lifecycle component in Professional Services at 65.1 scoring highly. As in 2010, Manufacturing is lowest placed and Metrics in Manufacturing at 39.4 the lowest score overall.
New Zealand’s overall ICT Sustainability performance of 51.9 is below the international average. It is equal to the international average in Enablement, and marginally behind in other areas.
New Zealandorganizations with 500-999 employees rate the highest (61.9) of any organization group in any country. In New Zealand there is no correlation between size and ICT Sustainability performance. This differs from the other six countries surveyed where larger organizations perform better.
By industry sector New Zealand is close to the international averages. It is substantially ahead in Utilities/Construction/Mining, particularly in the Enablement component at 70.1, and substantially behind in Wholesale/Retail/Logistics where the lowest score of all industries and components is Metrics at 27.6. New Zealand performs well in the Government sector, where ICT Sustainability policies and implementation are relatively advanced.
Chris Seale, director sustainability for Australia and New Zealand, said: “Participation in the research has been an unprecedented opportunity for local industries to be involved in a comprehensive global study and, subsequently, to have access to benchmarking statistics that provide applicable information for strategic planning. The Report provides a baseline from which to change planning and procurement as well as corporate-wide behaviors.”
The report is downloadable from