One of the largest employers in Sunderland drives down energy costs with PowerStudio

Gentoo is a housing association that owns and manages more than 29,000 homes in Sunderland. Focused on putting people first, they build great homes and create strong communities. The housing association is one of the largest employers in Sunderland and largest landlords in the North East of England.

The Challenge

With the drive to reduce CO2 emissions, many organizations have implemented formal environmental sustainability programs. Gentoo is such a company, pro-actively analyzing where energy is used and seeking to reduce wastage as much as possible. IT assets contribute to Gentoo’s energy usage and wastage, with desktops and terminals being left on unnecessarily both inside and outside of operational working hours. Gentoo needed a way to ensure that staff PCs were consistently powered down at the end of the day, and measure what impact this was having.

Gentoo also operates in an open plan office and with the new GDPR regulations needed a way to ensure personal data remained secure if users stepped away from their PC.

Influencing behavioral change is difficult within a work environment, especially achieving a long-term change to employee’s daily routines. It became clear that the only way to guarantee this would happen was to invest in a dedicated PC Power Management solution, capable of centrally controlling automated power-saving policies, auto locking unattended PCs, whilst measuring energy usage, wastage and providing evidence of both the CO2 footprint, energy costs and savings achieved.

Products purchased by Gentoo

“Our internal environmental sustainability approach, Planet Smart, is all about reducing the impact we have on the environment. This includes using energy efficiently and reducing the amount of energy we waste. PowerStudio enables us to manage usage across our numerous and remote housing offices, something we were previously limited in managing.

Following a period of monitoring energy usage and behaviors, we applied a range of power policies which we estimate will save us over £6,500 and 26.7 tCO2e per year. With improved visibility of our energy and computer usage, we can continue to review policies in order to reduce energy usage further.”

Jayne Bruce - Sustainability Coordinator

The Solution – A Centralized Approach

Gentoo required a solution to efficiently manage the energy consumption of desktop PCs across the length and breadth of the business. Based on an internal recommendation, Gentoo selected PowerStudio due to the functionality providing visibility of how and where energy is consumed, measuring both usage and wastage. This level of visibility is critical in order to accurately target and prevent wastage without impacting upon users.

PowerStudio provides Gentoo with practical and unobtrusive power-saving policies and facilitates the easy centralized management of more than 750 client devices across a wide geographical area.

With Power Policies, the company can profile and group machines appropriately and configure a range of tasks to create a comprehensive power management plan. This functionality within PowerStudio is essential for Gentoo, as a key requirement was the ability to automatically turn PC’s off during non-business hours. The company can also put machines in to low-energy states during business hours if they were evidently not required to be in use, allowing for the machines to respond quickly to activity and return to a full power state when required. With no restrictions over the number of policies that can be created, Gentoo can tailor these to the specific needs of different teams and departments.

PowerStudio enables Gentoo to maintain security by preventing machines being left logged-on for long periods of time without the user being present. The solution also helps Gentoo comply with the new GDPR regulations and keep their information secure within their ISO27001 audit. The solution also enables IT teams to wake systems when required out of hours to deliver essential patches and updates, helping to significantly reduce the risk of security threats.

Key Product Features

  • Provides visibility of energy consumption, usage and wastage
  • Automates reporting on IT’s energy costs, CO2 and savings
  • Enables automatic power down of unused machines as appropriate to user demand, both within and outside of business hours
  • Automatically lock-down unused PCs for security
  • Supports computer maintenance updates outside of working hours
  • Manages usage across numerous and remote housing offices

Key benefits of the solution

  • ROI in as little as 4-6 months
  • Reduce CO2 and comply with Government legislation
  • Improved maintenance and patching
  • Identifies heaviest used systems to plan for hardware refreshes
  • Easiest and quickest way to identify and achieve energy savings within IT
  • Offers a sustainable and long-term solution
  • Low on-going management overhead for IT
  • Highly available, detailed cost and Carbon Footprint reporting for environmental and business stakeholders

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