2011 Green 15 winner: Autodesk
Autodesk implemented worldwide virtual collaboration and telepresence technologies to cut costs, slash travel-related carbon emissions, and make bicoastal and global meetings more productive. The company's multiprong initiative included 20 Cisco TelePresence installations; more than 50 Polycom Roundtable installations; and Microsoft Office Communicator Service, for video chat, screen sharing, document sharing, and IM.
The company's Save a Million campaign educated its globally diverse workforce about the benefits and use of collaboration technology, encouraging them to save a million dollars in travel cost, pounds of carbon dioxide emissions, and minutes of productivity.
The efforts have paid off: 70 percent of Autodesk's virtual collaboration rooms are at capacity on any given day, and over 80 percent of Autodesk's employees have adopted Microsoft Office Communicator. Further, Autodesk has thus far cut monthly travel costs by 16 percent.
2011 Green 15 winner: Boulder Valley School District
The Boulder Valley School District launched a broad sustainability initiative to improve its environmental footprint and ultimately divert funds saved on energy toward better educational purposes.
The district first performed energy audits at its various schools, which includes a network of more than 10,000 computers. As a result of this audit, BVSD deployed Verismic Power Manager, which enables district IT to control the power settings of PCs districtwide from a central location.
BVSD also installed new fiber all through the district, enabling it to consolidate the workload of 125 servers previously housed among the various schools to 50 servers in a single location. As a result, the district claimed additional cost savings and easier administration.
Adhering to its vision of sustainability, the district further found a way to reduce packaging waste by requesting IT hardware vendors deliver computers and monitors on pallets instead of sending them individually. All in all, the district reports savings of around $300,000 while reducing its carbon footprint by 3,670 tons per year.
2011 Green 15 winner: The Copernicus Group Independent Review Board
Charged by the FDA to review biomedical research, the Copernicus Group Independent Review Board used to generate what amounted to a 22-foot-tall pillar of paper documents each week. Not only was the practice wasteful, the group's paper-reliant practices were highly inefficient. Today, the company is 97 percent paperless thanks to a series of IT projects culminating in a homegrown document-management portal called Connexus.
The paperless effort started in 2008 when the CGIRB installed Xerox DocuShare to manage nonregulated documents that did not required CFR-11 compliance, such as vacation requests and contracts. The CGIRB then hired an outside party to scan, index, and archive some 5 million legacy documents and publish them to DocuShare. From there, the group added the DocuShare Compliance Module for document management and collaboration.
CGRB then worked with Xerox and Sitrof to launch Connexus. The portal integrates with DocuShare, enabling clients and users to securely submit and access all document types, including those that require CFR-11 compliance. Electronic signature functionality eliminates the need to ship or fax documents back and forth to be signed with a pen.
The CGIRB paperless-office efforts have saved the organization more than $2 million on shipping, printing, postage, and file storage. Staffers can now digitally search through 5 million pages' worth of legacy documents and process client requests in 3.7 minutes on average instead of 104 minutes as had been the case in its paper-based era.