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COP26: From Government pressure to Corporate pressure, how ITAM can help

COP26: From Government Pressure to Corporate Pressure – No more blah, blah, blah.

A clear message from the COP26 summit in Glasgow is that large corporations are under pressure to demonstrate how they will be reaching net zero. The UN will provide mechanisms for clearer measurement, therefore reducing opportunities for green washing.

COP26: Rishi Sunak, UK Chancellor, announces directives for all large businesses and public enterprises to develop net zero plans. Speech, Image Source

I believe this pressure will naturally cascade to the IT department and those delivering IT services.

Our impact working in IT is twofold:

  1. The carbon load of internet, cloud and device usage is comparable to the footprint of global aviation, which is enormous. We need to do our bit here. I believe pressure to reach net zero will inevitably lead to changes in IT working practices.
  2. Secondly, IT is an extractive industry. In that for us to create cloud services, devices, hardware, and software – all these things are underpinned by the precious metals and minerals found in hardware. These are finite resources, extracting them creates damage and we’re not doing a good enough job of recycling them. I definitely see this as a pinch point in the future.

How ITAM can contribute towards sustainability

Back in October last year a group was formed to explore sustainability in ITAM. The group was formed as part of Working Group 21 (WG21), the international voluntary group that creates the 19770 family of standards.

Thank you to all the volunteers that joined the group and drove the conversation. As a group we have produced our first white paper, available free here: How IT Asset Management can contribute towards sustainability

The Executive Summary is as follows, in essence, IT Asset Management has a real strategic opportunity to support the sustainability goals of every organization:

Executive Summary

The objective of the paper is to inspire IT Asset Management and the broader IT Management profession to embrace sustainability into their IT practices.

This paper focuses not on purely energy consumption but on the whole lifecycle impact of IT services, including the raw materials that go into building software, hardware and cloud services.

We believe IT Asset Management professionals can have a dramatic impact on the management of Information Communications Technology (ICT), resulting in a more sustainable approach to IT asset use.

  1. Part one of this paper covers how IT Asset Managers can help with sustainability, the business case for sustainable IT and how sustainable IT services begin with planning
    and procurement.
  2. Part two covers the circular economy. We explore why organizations should embrace suppliers that offer circular business models, that is, with a focus on the reuse of
    finite resources.
  3. Finally, in Part three, we look at prolonging the useful life of IT assets, the pros and cons of reuse and the disposition options available to organizations.

This paper has been compiled by a Working Group 21 (WG21) study group. WG21 is the international voluntary group that builds ITAM standards, including ISO/IEC 19770.

How IT Asset Management can contribute towards sustainability

We would love to receive your feedback and will continue to research in this area. If you would like to get involved with this group please contact me. Thanks, Martin

About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource for worldwide ITAM professionals. The ITAM Review is best known for its weekly newsletter of all the latest industry updates, LISA training platform, Excellence Awards and conferences in UK, USA and Australia.

Martin is also the founder of ITAM Forum, a not-for-profit trade body for the ITAM industry created to raise the profile of the profession and bring an organisational certification to market. On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

He is also the author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management. In addition, Martin developed the PITAM training course and certification.

Prior to founding the ITAM Review in 2008 Martin worked for Centennial Software (Ivanti), Silicon Graphics, CA Technologies and Computer 2000 (Tech Data).

When not working, Martin likes to Ski, Hike, Motorbike and spend time with his young family.

Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.

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