Thursday, June 18, 2009

SUSTAIN YOURSELF: VIDEO CONFERENCING

Tree Hugger - Videoconferencing is enjoying a revival of sorts in Scandinavia. As bandwidth gets better, HD videoconferencing is emerging and companies are being forced to take a harder look at travel policies and carbon impacts. Telia, Sweden's now-privatized telephone company, said it saves 70 million crowns (more than $10 million) a year by its green travel and meeting policy. And the Swedish Road Administration said it has made 50 percent of its major meetings videoconferences.

The first step to a green travel policy is determining whether a meeting is actually even necessary. Telia's travel has dropped 30 percent since implementing its policy.

High-definition videoconferencing is now being designed so that participants really feel that their co-workers are sitting across the table from them. These fancy videoconference rooms, from vendors such as Cisco and Tandberg, can cost from between $200,000 and $450,000 per room. . .

But videoconferencing can also be less upscale - a late-model standard Apple laptop with barely any additions can get the job done.

Stats and surveys

Tree Hugger - According to CIO Insight Research's Mobility Survey: "51 percent of CIOs and other senior IT leaders surveyed said their companies discourage fulltime telecommuting. An equal number of the 237 respondents-24 percent each-said their firms encourage fulltime telecommuting or remain neutral."

But there is hope, since when asked how their company's policy has changed over the past 3 years, 34% said that it's more positive against 8% replying it was more negative for full-time telecommuting, and for part-time telecommuting, the figures are 46% vs. 5%.

"In a poll of 1,500 technology workers, 37 percent said they would accept a salary cut [of up to 10%] if they could work from home, according to Dice Holdings."

Telecommuting Could Save Billions of Gallons of Gasoline According to Telework Exchange, "f white-collar employees who feel they could do their jobs from home began to telework twice a week, the United States could conserve 9.7 billion gallons of gasoline and save $38.2 billion a year." These calculations are based on 50 miles roundtrips in vehicles getting 24 miles per gallon, with gasoline at $3.94/gallon.