CIOs ignoring PC power management

by CXOtoday staff    Jan 09, 2012

PC power management (PCPM) is overlooked by organizations, despite the cost savings it can deliver, says independent technology analyst firm Ovum.

In a new report titled ‘Selecting a PC Power Management Solution Vendor,’ average power consumption savings of 40 percent are being ignored, in part due to fear from IT departments that PCPM solutions may disrupt core IT operations.

“With the cost of electricity rising and increasing pressure on organizations to implement sustainability initiatives, PCPM solutions can be an effective way to reduce energy consumption, and therefore operating costs,” said Rhonda Ascierto, Ovum Senior Analyst and author of the report.

Ovum points to annual power consumption savings of around $36 per PC, and associated reductions of 380kWh and 586 pounds of CO2 per PC per year. Additionally, the payback period for many solutions is expected to be no more than six months.

However, even though Ovum research shows IT budgets remaining flat in 2011 and growing carbon-reduction requirements and mandates, many IT decision-makers continue to forgo PCPM, despite its significant cost-saving benefits.

“There exists a general mistrust among IT departments and a fear that power management solutions may disrupt core IT operations,” said Ascierto. “But this is a misconception: none of the power-management solutions we review in this report disrupts maintenance or other IT processes.”

Lack of adoption could also be due to IT administrators’ inflated expectations of the effectiveness of desktops’ built-in power-saving technologies. Yet, while newer desktop machines and operating systems have improved power-saving features, Ovum believes they are inadequate, as they are largely unable to tackle PC insomnia, which occurs when a machine is idle yet unable to shut down or switch into a low-power mode.

“Organizations need to consider power management solutions as part of their broader business and sustainability strategies. The focus should be on solutions that deliver measurable and actionable results, which will encourage employee participation,” concludes Ascierto.