Technological progress offers many ways to address the challenges posed by climate change, scarcity of resources, and nationwide healthcare. Information and communications technology (ICT ) plays a key role in this context. Our products and services make climate-friendly consumption a reality for our customers and offer new approaches to healthcare.
Management approach (sustainable products)
ICT helps industry, service providers, and consumers pursue a more sustainable approach and holds tremendous market potential for that very reason. According to the Smarter2020 study, for example, 16.5 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions worldwide could be cut by the year 2020 through targeted use of ICT . But sustainability is more than just protecting the climate. It also means reducing resource consumption, stabilizing power grids, simplifying work processes and further improving medical care. ICT makes a considerable contribution to all these tasks.
We are committed to systematically leveraging the vast sustainability potential of ICT . To do this, we focus on the growth areas of smart energy, connected car, and e-health. In 2014 we also developed our own assessment tool to analyze sustainability impact commercial opportunities of selected products.
Managing sustainable products also calls for systematic measures to be implemented throughout the supply chain. That is why we have already developed extensive processes to guarantee compliance with sustainability criteria. We use our Design Principles as a guideline when developing new products. We also use recognized environmental labels such as the Blue Angel and the TUEV Certified Green Product label. The requirements behind these labels show us how we can further improve our products and help us keep our customers informed about the sustainability benefits our products offer. We address our customers with a variety of measures and offers in order to make sure that our products are reused or disposed of professionally at the end of their life cycle.
Business potential through sustainability
In order to systematically tap the opportunities presented by sustainable products and to create a sustainable product portfolio, we identified 68 potentially sustainable products and solutions in our current portfolio in a pilot project conducted in 2014. We selected Dynamic Workplace, Connected Car, and Smart Metering as pilot products to be tested for their contribution to sustainability and the resulting business potential they hold. We identified their benefits in view of all three pillars of sustainability: environmental, social, and economic. We found, for example, that Dynamic Workplace, a cloud-based offer for business customers, makes it possible for a company with 35,000 employees to reduce CO2 emissions by more than 16,000 metric tons per year and reduce costs by more than EUR 15 million. Dynamic Workplace lets employees work outside of the office from any location. Among other benefits, around two million hours previously spent commuting can thus be used for more productive or more pleasant activities. You will find other advantages and further details in the illustration below. This example shows how sustainability criteria can give us a competitive advantage. That is why we intend to systematically address these criteria when marketing our products. The next step will be to review other products on the same basis.