Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What Does IT Have to Do with Corporate Responsibility?

Apparently everything, according to some workers. A Deloitte online poll showed that more than 40 percent of employees believe their company’s IT department is very involved in corporate responsibility and sustainability efforts. They aren’t so far off the mark in their expectations, but as far as actual demonstration of proof, there is still a ways to go.

The survey showed that 25 percent of companies have a green IT program in place while another 9 percent plan to have one within the next year. In addition, close to 17 percent reported that IT is directly involved in their corporate responsibility and sustainability strategies, programs, and activities throughout their company, rather than just limited to carbon management.

The poll was conducted during a Deloitte webcast called “Competing in the Low-Carbon Economy: The Essential Dialog [sic] between the CIO and C-suite.”

“Companies today are relying more on CIOs to help drive business strategies and innovation, and our polling indicates that IT is becoming recognized as an essential enabler of sustainability efforts throughout the enterprise,” said Lee Dittmar, principal of Deloitte Consulting LLP.

Dittmar advised that CIOs need to be prepared to make a business case for IT in evolving sustainability strategies and programs. Points of preparation he suggested include knowing how to establish baseline measurements; aligning with corporate responsibility and sustainability goals and investments; determining information needs to measure progress at all levels; ensuring information availability and accessibility; and evaluating IT capabilities to measure, monitor, and report corporate responsibility and sustainability.

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