The need for businesses to make their operations sustainable and more environmentally friendly has become more important than ever. The idea of sustainability and creating a culture that promotes environmental friendliness is said to be important for businesses.
A recent study found that 90% of respondents, all of which were business executives, highlighted environmental, social and governance (ESG) as a top priority for their companies. However, the research also revealed that UK firms, are only allocating 8% of their budget towards initiatives which will help improve their ESG impacts.
This shows that there may be a disconnect between what actions businesses want to take, and what they feel they can achieve. The reason for this gap sometimes can be because some businesses feel that need to make a ground-breaking change to have any impact, which isn’t true.
Nowadays, businesses are beginning to migrate most of their operations to the cloud. Although it may seem like a small action, it is a common way to begin minimising a company’s carbon footprint and can have a substantial impact, as cloud servers are designed to be powered in the most environmentally efficient way possible.
In this article, we will detail 5 reasons why migrating to the cloud is the best way to help your business become more environmentally friendly.
1. Reduces Energy Consumption
When a company runs its servers from their on-site premises, a lot of energy is required. A large proportion of this energy is used primarily on two things, supplying power to the server, and powering the cooling system which reduces the risk of the server overheating. As of 2020, the average amount of energy used hourly by a server in these data centres is between 500 and 1000watts.
Moving to a cloud-based system will mean that you will no longer need to power this equipment, as your server will not be on-site. Resultantly, your energy consumption from on-site infrastructure will significantly reduce, and in turn, your carbon footprint will be minimised too.
2. The Cloud is Powered by Renewable Energy
Most cloud data centres are powered using renewable energy sources such as solar, geothermal and wind. The benefit of this being that the energy produced at these data centres create essentially no greenhouse gases. Cloud data centres are also built strategically close to these energy source, meaning no excess energy needs to be wasted in powering the data centre itself.
Alternatively, having your servers located on your premises means that your carbon footprint will be quite significant. This contribution largely comes from the lifecycle of the hardware you are housing. From the raw materials used to create your equipment, transporting the equipment to your offices, using the equipment, and then disposing of it at the end of its life, the negative footprint across its lifecycle can be big.
If you needed a reason to transfer your data to the cloud, the fact that it is powered by renewable sources is it. This transition will help you to minimise a substantial portion of your carbon footprint with minimal labour involved, and without any drastic changes to how your business runs its operations.
3. Increases Dematerialisation
A valuable feature of cloud-based systems is that it provides employees with the ability to share documents anywhere in the world, at any point in time, from almost any device through digital means. The benefit being that the cloud can help to reduce the need for physical resources with a lot of ease.
Instead of multiple printouts having to be made in preparation for a monthly meeting, the cloud allows any important documents to be shared to the relevant employees without generating any waste and using unnecessary energy. Using a cloud-based system means that you will no longer need to rely on any machinery or hardware to produce relevant material for employees. In turn, this can have a positive impact on communication between employees and better, less energy will be consumed resulting in a minimised environmental impact.
4. Resources Can be Better Allocated
Commonly, when businesses use an on-premise server, it is rare that the server is using all its available resources. Companies on a larger scale often only use around 70% of their server power, where smaller companies can use potentially 20%.
Because of this, cloud computing systems can offer shared data centres which allow multiple companies to be attached to one server. Sharing a server with another company can be an effective solution to minimise your negative environmental output, as it decreases the amount of energy wasted from powering another server that is also not used to its full potential.
This solution is perfect if you only need a server for limited uses such as sharing documents, hosting email or excess website storage. However, if you did find that you needed more than one server, shared data centres are scalable, meaning that you can add more servers, if you wish to do so, and are designed to only be powered when specific resources are needed to help you remain environmentally efficient.
How Can We Help?
As shown above, there are an abundance of environmental benefits that make moving to the cloud a valuable transition to help reduce your company’s carbon footprint.
Whether it be reducing your energy uses or re-organising your resources to operate more efficiently, the migration to the cloud will help to improve your business sustainability even in a small way.
If switching to the cloud is something you are considering doing, and you’d like to have a chat with us here at Direct Voice & Data, contact us here.