Thursday, 13th August 2020

Environment not costs concern next generation IT leaders

Environmental impact of service providers set to influence business decision making in the near future.

Leading IT professionals are embracing the need to be more environmentally aware, and as a result expect other companies to be more socially and environmentally responsible.

This is according to new research set to be published in January 2020 from the UK’s fastest growing independent data centre, Volta Data Centres.

The research shows that over a quarter (26%) of UK IT decision makers have changed utility provider because they disagreed with their views / environmental practices. This figure rises to 42% of those under 35 years old.

The independent research project, carried out by Sapio Research, quizzed over 200 UK-based IT decision makers on their views ranging from environmental responsibility, cyber-security and data privacy.

The results showed that decisions aren’t being made on price alone and that there is a growing shift towards more environmentally responsible businesses. Over half (51%) stated they would be more likely to use renewable energy from a utility service provider even if it was more expensive – rising to 72% of the under 35s.

Over two thirds (68%) of those working in companies with more than 200 employees would also be more likely to use renewable energy despite the cost.

Jon Arnold, Managing Director at Volta Data Centres, said: “This research has shown that the purchasing decisions made by many technology leaders in the UK will be based on what providers are doing to combat the environmental challenge we all face. The responsibility to tackle environmental issues doesn’t fall to any singular sector, in fact our research shows that IT leaders see Governments, Corporations and us as individuals sharing equal responsibility​.”

The level of commitment to environmental change may take some in government and big business by surprise. According to the survey, over one third (35%) of IT decision makers would be likely to quit their current job if they discovered their employer did not take any measures to be environmentally responsible – rising to 59% of the under 35s. In addition, 21% of this younger demographic would also be prepared to sacrifice part of their salary to local recycling initiatives to be more environmentally responsible.

Arnold continues, “There is a strong environmental concern and awareness amongst the future generation of IT leaders, and this will undoubtably have an influence on business decision making in the future. If businesses want to remain competitive, they will have to demonstrate their resolve to doing more for the environment. This is why I am pleased that we continue to lead the way at Volta Data Centres as we work on a number of projects in 2020 that focus on becoming more environmentally responsible.”

Other highlights from the research report include:

·The impact of future technological advancements on data. With our lives becoming ever more connected, do those at the forefront of the industry trust where this data ends up? It would appear not, just over half of IT decision makers admitting there are personal data security implications for both 5G (51%) and IoT (55%).

·The fear mongering about new-data concerns might not be entirely true – despite recent scandals over facial recognition technology, 72% of IT decision makers would be happy for the technology to be used for law enforcement purposes in public spaces.

·Just how far people would go to be more environmentally responsible. Not without their phone at least. Nearly half of all respondents (47%) said they would be unwilling to give up their phone even if it meant helping to save the planet. We might be concerned where personal data is stored, but it seems people don’t want to give up on creating it any time soon.

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