Are Solution Providers, VARs and IT Consultants Ready for Environmental Certifications?

By Pedro Pereira  |  Print this article Print


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VARs, ISVs, solution providers and IT consultants may ultimately be able to put the green stamp on their environmental efforts. Analysts say it is time for the VARs, ISVs, solution providers and IT consultants to get behind an IT certification effort for environmental practices and solutions.

Anyone who has bought an appliance in recent years surely has come across the Energy Star designation, which assures buyers the dishwasher or air-condition unit they choose has achieved a certain standard of energy efficiency.
The same goes for computer products such as power supplies, desktops and monitors. But what if you’re a solution provider that wants to show your customers that you operate your business according to the best green practices?

Right now, you might explain the efficiency of the products you sell and how the processes you use to deliver the technology were designed to disturb the environment as little as possible. It could take a fair amount of time to go over which products have some recycled and renewable materials, or which devices cut power use when idle.

But eventually, you might just be able to show your customer a green IT certification—some sort of seal or document to prove that how you run your business and the products you deliver conform with the ideals of environmental friendliness. In a paper published in May, research firm Gartner suggested the current lack of an industrywide certification may hinder the efforts of small solution providers pushing green IT solutions.

"At some point during the next five years, most purchasers of technology will start vetting the green credentials of their suppliers against their own requirements to find the appropriate match," according to the Gartner paper, "Dataquest Insight: What Green IT Means to the Channel," authored by analysts Rakesh Kumar and Tiffani Bova. "This will not only involve an assessment of the products or services being sold, but also an appraisal of the environmental responsibility, policies and practices assumed by the channel organization selling the goods."

Bova and Kumar aren’t alone in positing that customers will start demanding green credentials from suppliers.

"Information Technology is a critical part of every company's supply chain and is beginning to come under scrutiny and becoming part of the buying criteria for many companies," says Jeff Wacker, corporate futurist at Electronic Data Systems.


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