The Governance of Green IT

The Governance of Green IT: The Role of Processes in Reducing Data Center Energy Requirements

GEORGE SPAFFORD
Copyright Date: 2008
Published by: IT Governance Publishing
Pages: 53
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt5hh4nh
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  • Book Info
    The Governance of Green IT
    Book Description:

    This book’s message has nothing to do with greenwash. It is intended for people who are looking for hard, practical advice on how to fix a problem. Green IT needs to establish baseline data so that progress can be effectively tracked, and metrics are essential for that. Taking Green IT seriously also means coming up with a plan and making sure it gets delivered. So it is vital to treat Green IT as a process. You need to make the CIO responsible for the energy consumption of the data centre, and allow him to do what it takes to drive costs down. To retain momentum, your Green IT strategy also needs the support of top management. Meanwhile, lower down the hierarchy, employees need to know that Green IT is not just a fad, but something your company is treating as a real priority.

    eISBN: 978-1-905356-75-1
    Subjects: Business, Technology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 2-4)
  2. PREFACE
    (pp. 5-5)
  3. ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    (pp. 6-6)
  4. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
    (pp. 7-7)
  5. Table of Contents
    (pp. 8-8)
  6. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. 9-11)

    The physical and digital worlds move on energy and when the cost of electricity rises, many dynamics come into play. Organizations faced with high energy prices may be forced to make short-term cost-cutting decisions that move them away from their goal and if they aren’t careful, can even permanently impede their ability to attain their goal.

    Information technology (IT) occupies an interesting position in organizations. On one hand, it is an energy consumer and on the other, it can help organizations achieve objectives related to minimizing energy expenditures.

    With the current public spotlight on the effects of global warming and...

  7. CHAPTER 1: THE GOVERNANCE OF GREEN IT
    (pp. 12-13)

    From a true governance perspective, boards are concerned about the goals of the organization, such as maximizing return on shareholder equity, and managing risks that may prevent goals from being realized.

    Information technology (IT) plays a key enabler role in organizations. By providing solutions comprised of people, process and technology, in the form of IT services to the business, IT has transformed how business is conducted to the extent that it is not possible to efficiently and effectively conduct day-to-day activities without the assistance of IT services.

    As an enabler, IT must be utilized by management to help various functional...

  8. CHAPTER 2: THE GREEN IT PROCESS
    (pp. 14-21)

    In order for management to effectively and efficiently support the direction set forth by the board, a process must be defined. Given the topic at hand, we will identify this as the “Green IT” process. By formalizing this process, it allows for a proper understanding of inputs, outputs, roles and responsibilities, workflows, metrics, and so on.

    Furthermore, by implementing a process, we can leverage quality management disciplines to continuously improve and better support the organization.

    The goal is for IT to support the green objectives of the organization as defined by the board and/or a corporate social responsibility management group....

  9. CHAPTER 3: PROCESS INTEGRATION
    (pp. 22-31)

    No process can exist in isolation and Green IT especially requires integration with other processes in order to be successful because its mission can only be achieved by working through other processes and IT functional areas.

    To review how the Green IT process integrates with other processes and some defined functions, we will leverage the IT infrastructure library (ITIL®) version three process framework:⁵

    This life cycle phase is concerned with leveraging IT to achieve functional area objectives. As an enabler, IT achieves success by enabling other areas to achieve and safeguard their objectives in support of the organization’s goals.

    In...

  10. CHAPTER 4: ACCOUNTING AND METRICS
    (pp. 32-38)

    Green IT needs baseline data to be established so progress can be appropriately tracked. At this point, there are two topics that need to be reviewed. The first involves accounting for energy costs and the second is process-related metrics.

    The first step is to understand how much is being spent on electricity for the data centers. Many times this charge is buried in other electric utility bills and needs to be broken out, tracked and trended over time.

    In terms of electricity, the more granular the understanding the better. Studies show that only around 30% of the electricity actually goes...

  11. CHAPTER 5: MANAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
    (pp. 39-43)

    As the Green IT process is implemented and matures, it is useful to look at areas where management can help drive improvements.

    It is critical that senior management support Green IT. If they are unwavering in their words and deeds then staff will realize that this is a true management priority and not just a fad that can be ignored.

    To facilitate senior management support, their input should be sought in terms of their expectations and reporting needs. IT should then pursue courses of action and report back what is being done to meet those expectations.

    Care must be taken...

  12. CHAPTER 6: DATA CENTER TECHNICAL OPPORTUNITIES
    (pp. 44-49)

    Given the state of energy consumption in the data center, it is important to identify improvement opportunities to explore.

    Based on studies by The Green Grid, the top four categories that account for 90% of power consumption are the chiller (33%), IT hardware (30%), uninterruptible power supply (18%) and the computer room air conditioner (nine per cent)¹².

    Given that data, these are the four general areas to investigate initially. As more data is collected and insight generated, there will be specific improvement opportunities that will need to be reviewed and prioritized accordingly.

    Up to 30% of the servers in a...

  13. CHAPTER 7: CONCLUSION
    (pp. 50-50)

    The role of information technology is to enable the creation and protection of value for an organization. As such, IT needs to help enable the green strategy of the firm by not only addressing its energy consumption but also by providing technical solutions to other functional areas so they can achieve their objectives.

    Due to risks relating to escalating costs, environmental concerns, and regulation, initiatives to curb energy consumption should be a priority for many firms – especially those with data centers.

    To facilitate this, boards need to be involved at the organizational goal and risk levels. Management should then design...

  14. APPENDIX: GREEN IT RESOURCES
    (pp. 51-51)
  15. ITG RESOURCES
    (pp. 52-53)