Great IT change came with a whisper not a bang

October 8, 2009
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CEQ-signI have a thesis I would like to try on you. In the IT world, like in many other human endeavors, the things that get measured get improved. And the things that don’t get measured are easy to ignore. So, when the world’s largest IT enterprise (the US federal government) starts measuring IT differently we need to take note.

Specifically the feds will be improving the measurement of energy efficiencies of IT. This will be done to meet goals mandated by an executive order that President Obama signed on 5 October 2009 titled “FEDERAL LEADERSHIP IN ENVIRONMENTAL, ENERGY, AND ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE”.

Agencies will no longer be able to ignore the cost of energy for their IT. The Federal Government will be required to lead by example in IT efficiency.  Agencies are required to promote electronics stewardship, acquire energy efficient IT, enable IT power management, and implement best management practices for energy-efficient management of servers and Federal data centers.

What is the “so-what” here?

In most cases in the federal government, the agency CIO does not have to share in the energy bill. The CIO gets energy for free. So energy costs have never been a driver in CIO



CEQ-signI have a thesis I would like to try on you.
In the IT world, like in many other human endeavors, the things that get measured get improved. And the things that don’t get measured are easy to ignore. So, when the world’s largest IT enterprise (the US federal government) starts measuring IT differently we need to take note.

Specifically the feds will be improving the measurement of energy efficiencies of IT. This will be done to meet goals mandated by an executive order that President Obama signed on 5 October 2009 titled “FEDERAL LEADERSHIP IN ENVIRONMENTAL, ENERGY, AND ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE”.

Agencies will no longer be able to ignore the cost of energy for their IT. The Federal Government will be required to lead by example in IT efficiency.  Agencies are required to promote electronics stewardship, acquire energy efficient IT, enable IT power management, and implement best management practices for energy-efficient management of servers and Federal data centers.

What is the “so-what” here?

In most cases in the federal government, the agency CIO does not have to share in the energy bill. The CIO gets energy for free. So energy costs have never been a driver in CIO decisions. Now, even if CIOs do not have to pay for energy, they are going to be measured by energy efficiencies. This will give them more reason to modernize. By selecting newer multi-core servers and newer storage devices (like Solid State Disk [SSD]), dramatic energy efficiencies can be gained in ways that also dramatically increase performance. They will also be encouraged to virtualize more, and will also be encouraged to build in more collaborative technologies that let humans interact across great distances. All this will increase performance.

So now we get to the “so-what” of my thesis. Saving energy in IT requires modernization. And modernization also improves performance. So we all win! We save energy, reduce pollution, and improve IT performance!

Do you buy that thesis?

Related posts:

  1. Gmail actually stands for Green(er) Mail
  2. Performance Management In Organizations and Computers
  3. OMB on CIOs: Some context for the enterprise CTO



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