Jeff Holmes, enterprise architect for Con-way Freight, expressed similar sentiments in regard to the company's effort to cut transportation costs. "A key aspect of this project was defining and producing metrics that demonstrate how potential changes will save Con-Way money," Holmes said. "In this case line-haul miles and line-haul cost savings were very important. Being able to link those metrics to a positive impact on the environment further justified the project and gave us an opportunity to market that impact in an otherwise carbon-intensive industry."
[ Learn how to measure your company's green IT baseline. ]
One last word of advice: Beware of greenwashing, cautions Ted Hein, director of information services at Burt's Bees. "Greenwashing ranges from ambiguous statements such as 'what we sell is green' to outright deceptive claims on energy-consumption reduction."
Instead of taking a salesperson's claims at face value, do some measuring of your own. "Rather than using supplier specifications, we ended up validating the before-and-after consumption of servers and SAN [equipment] using Kill-A-Watt meters to determine our net energy savings," Hein said.
I'm certain there are other lessons to be learned from green-tech initiatives. Please feel free to share yours in the comment section below.