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Channel partners are key for monitoring sustainability initiatives

May 2024 by Mark Appleton, Chief Customer Office at ALSO Cloud UK

As cloud sustainability becomes a greater focus amongst businesses, channel IT partners play a crucial role in spearheading the move to sustainable providers.

With businesses under increasing pressure to pivot toward sustainability, it is no longer as simple as wanting to be green – meaningful action is needed. Digital technology has emerged as a drive towards corporate green strategies, with predictions that 2024 will mark businesses embracing a focus on sustainability alongside AI automation and Cloud ERP.

Whilst major cloud providers are making substantial commitments to sustainability and net zero already, it can be difficult for SMEs looking to monitor their impact without the budget, resources and visibility that bigger tech giants possess. Yet this visibility is necessary if every business is going to contribute to the path of a net-zero UK.

Mark Appleton, Chief Customer Officer at ALSO Cloud UK, believes that before businesses can lower their carbon footprints and adopt more sustainable operations, IT leaders first require greater transparency about their current environmental impact, which technology providers are equipped to help with.

"Organisations need support when it comes to ensuring sustainability is a priority in the decision-making process. Green initiatives are quickly let down by their weakest, energy-consuming component, and it is no different when it comes to cloud computing.

"Visibility across the technology supply chain, and accountability for those missing the mark, can quickly help turn around any business not heading in the right direction. With greater demand for such environmentally friendly solutions, technology providers and channel partners are in the best position to support businesses with sustainable technology options."

Appleton believes businesses should act now regarding monitoring their environmental impact. "You can’t manage what you can’t measure, so getting a complete picture of a product’s emissions during its life should be a priority. This starts with getting the product’s carbon footprint and tracking the emissions created from the manufacturing process to the end users. To account for the emissions caused should be a priority for all vendors to provide better, energy-saving products and solutions to their customers.

"There is also an increasing demand from customers that their vendor of choice adopts an environmentally conscious approach to management. Understanding the shift in expectations for greener agendas is something to be increasingly conscious of, as well as prioritising more efficient resource use. The need for computing power and data centres is here to stay, but channel partners and resellers can step in for support with their high level of expertise to help mitigate net negative impact.

"Striking a balance between good ESG aspects across all business decision-making is key and should be reflected through IT provider’s sustainability strategies. Cloud technology as always holds the answer, not only enabling companies to lower their energy consumption but also contributing to reducing their overall environmental impact. Ensuring that your provider shares those priorities, can monitor this across every step of the way, and also strategise future-proof green agendas, are all responsibility on not just businesses, but for technology providers to support as well."

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