Can your IT services firm handle your tech recycling or refurbishment needs?

Many smaller IT services firms have had the chance to set up their own tech recycling services. That's why distributor Tech Data is stepping in with a new relationship.
Written by Heather Clancy, Contributor on

OK, so I know that many GreenTech Pastures readers probably deal with at least one outside vendor that handles some aspect of their IT work, whether its hardware deployment or systems integration or project rollouts. Some of the larger services organizations, particularly those allied with the tier one hardware vendors (Hewlett-Packard, Dell, IBM, etc.) has built up some sort of asset disposition teams.

But not everyone is big, and very few IT services firms have built up the relationships to do this on their own. That's why distributor Tech Data has stepped in to ally itself with TechTurn, which is a provider of services focused on technology recycling, refurbishment and remarketing. I like to think of those three activities as the new "three R's."

The time is pretty cool, actually, if you think about it, because I am sure that many of you are nursing systems that are four or five years old now. With Windows 7 hanging out there, this may be the first time that you've been faced with the problem of how to get rid of your old hardware responsibly and how to eke as much out of it as you can along the way.

If you're a VAR or IT solutions provider reading this entry, this is another good reason that you might decide to work with Tech Data on a project rather than another distributor. TechTurn is pretty serious about working with IT services firms that it knows are out there in front of customers and it signed up a Microsoft executive last fall to handle this. TechTurn is closely aligned with Dell and Microsoft, to boot.

TechTurn meets all the requisite checkoff items that you need out of a technology recycling company, and it touts the fact that it holds an R2/RIOS certification for electronics recycling. I had to look this up, because I didn't know what it was. But essentially, there are two things at play here. The R2 thing is a standard for Responsible Recycling Practices that was developed collectively by a lot of different stakeholders including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, OEMs including Lenovo and Dell, the Information Technology Industry Council, the Electronic Recyclers' Industry Association and a number of state and local governments. The second thing, RIOS, is an integrated system for managing environmental, quality and health and safety concerns.

TechTurn is actually the first company to earn both certifications worldwide.

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