For the most part, the companies that many of us consider green IT leaders are still focused on the rather narrow goal of better energy efficiency and improved lifecycle management strategies for their products rather than any revelatory strategies that more explicitly position their technology as a way of helping a business getting greener holistically.
That's the overriding conclusion of a new report compiled by research firm Gartner and the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF) Sweden. The weighty analysis, called "Summary Report: Low-Carbon and Environmental Leadership in the ICT Industry by Gartner and WWF, 2010," identifies the following IT companies as the top 10 companies in terms of all-around performance (things switch up a bit when you consider these companies according to other metrics, as I'll detail in a moment).
The top 10 for all-around performance are:
- Cisco Systems
- British Telecom
As I mentioned, things switch up when you consider these companies according to different metrics. Because I promised the Gartner analyst who created this report, Simon Mingay, that I wouldn't disclose TOO much, I'll give you the top companies when those individual criteria are considered. They are:
- Transformation BY IT = BT
- Transformation OF IT = Fujitsu
- Internal Environmental Performance = Fujitsu
- Supply Chain = HP
A moment on how these lists were compiled. When I spoke with Mingay, he said comprehensive surveys were sent to 28 different companies in the industry. There were about 113 core questions in these areas: Internal Environmental Basics, Supply Chain Advocacy, and How Products Help Customers Meet Their Own Sustainability Goals. This is the second time that this ranking has been compiled. The last time was back in 2008.
Why was IBM picked as the No. 1 vendor? "What we have seen in IBM is as close to strategic engagement on these issues as any company," Mingay says. "They are putting significant resources and processes in place. They are measuring the market. They are defining the markets. They are setting goals and targets. ... We think that IBM shows more of a strategic engagement than anyone else."
Personally, I found the companies MISSING from this list to be equally fascinating. Here's who DID NOT answer the Gartner/WWF questionnaire:
- China Mobile
What do you make of that? Since I know certain companies, notably Google, have done well on other lists, I find the non-response puzzling. But, increasingly, I'm wondering where Oracle is. It needs to start talking about its green IT strategy. I'm willing to listen.