While you could claim green IT consultation is a one-off play – once a company knows what their environmental sustainability needs are they could arguably go it alone – those companies that do have the right credentials and experience will be in a better position to cement their position as trusted advisors once green IT becomes business as usual.
“It’s quite different from a consulting engagement which might be around a specific project,” Fujitsu’s O’Flynn said. “This is really about building a relationship and supporting a business in their goals for a long-term future and setting them up to achieve that and making sure they get the benefits.”
IDC’s Carter agreed and said the green trend would not be limited to government or large enterprise.
“For the large accounts, providing that extra advice is going to better client relationships and develop more strategic value,” he said. “But it’s a bit difficult to quantify. It is going to be a tiebreaker for some of the big deals that come through on the government side specifically.
“Most of our presentations are around large enterprise and when I stand up and do a presentation they ask ‘what does this mean to us in small- and medium-sized business?’ My feedback is always, even though SMBs are much more focused on just getting by and making the top line and bottom line numbers, there has to be an increased awareness around both positive environmental and business outcomes.
“When you look at some of the small changes at a business process level that can be made, in terms of the devices that you use, default printing options, small things like that which SMBs can do, they realise it is not going to develop into millions of dollars in savings, but it is going to have an impact on the bottom line.”
Indeed, regardless of a client’s size, repeatable green IT business comes as a product of providing clients with the optimal customer experience and delivering on promise, according to Datacom general manager, Andrew Peel.
“In the area of green IT, repeatable business will come from providing customers with sustainable solutions that can be easily implemented and managed, have minimal fiscal impact and provide future cost savings due to efficiency gains,” he said.
Overall the technologies and processes involved in green IT are part and parcel of best practice – particularly in datacentres – and will continue to be so going forward as demands on IT infrastructure increase.
“We’ve got to keep going down this path and got to carry on driving it harder because IT requirement will continue to grow and just doing good housekeeping won’t get you there,” IBM’s Fasseau said.