The ISD: A Key Player in CSR
The Information Systems Department (ISD) has become a key player in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in an ambivalent era where digital technology is a vector of performance and growth for organisations, and a world of finite resources.
In recent years, and amplified by Covid 19, all organisations and economic sectors have accelerated their digitalisation to all their BtoB, BtoC, BtoG relationships to better reach and serve their customers or users.
This has led to a greater centrality of digital in organisations, to the point where every project contains a digital component and it is present in all the daily actions of employees, customers and suppliers.
In our world of limited resources, awareness of the environmental impact of digital technologies is growing : 85% of French people believe that reducing the impact of digital technology on the environment should be a priority*.
In addition, this societal awareness is reflected in a range of regulations and standards that are being implemented and also in the establishment of a Citizens’ Climate Convention in April 2019.
To meet these major challenges, the company, through the IT department, can initiate a digital moderation approach that aims to réduction reduce the organisation’s carbon footprint while optimising the company’s performance and growth. The IT department and other departments will ensure that business and regulatory requirements are met.
Among other things, the ISD can work on the following five areas :
- Management: with the definition of new company and project indicators.
- The commitment of a project may be conditional on compliance with digital efficiency indicators ;
- Throughout its implementation, digital efficiency indicators will be produced to ensure that commitments are met.
- The implementation of new solutions or technological architectures that meet the requirements of energy savings and greenhouse gas emissions.
- These new approaches to architectures cannot be realised without the implementation of an approach to optimising energy consumption for data and data flow management ;
- The implementation of a data management system that takes these aspects into account is central.
- When launching new projects or designing new services, the IT department, together with the business departments, must pay particular attention to :
- Societal impact ;
- Usefulness, usability and end-user of the project and services ;
- Sustainability of solutions and services ;
- The quality of the design with the aim of minimising the maintenance of services
- Raising employees’ awareness of the uses and eco-friendly gestures of everyday digital life, This can also be seen in the actions of the company by lengthening equipment renewal cycles or by giving a second life to equipment outside the company. It can also be seen in the actions of the company by extending the renewal cycles of equipment or by giving a second life to equipment outside the company.
- Regular evaluation of IT suppliers to support the internal responsible purchasing policy, but above all the integration of contractual clauses imposing environmental commitment through specific actions.
The implementation of this approach requires awareness and leadership at the highest level of the organisation. However, it cannot be a top-down approach; it must be co-constructed with a combination of top-down and bottom-up approaches to ensure that the whole organisation takes ownership.
All of these actions, which are not exhaustive, are based on the responsible digital approach and allow for the creation of a new agreement between the various departments of the company, thanks to :
- The capacity of digital to reduce the footprint (economic, social and environmental) ;
- The ability to create sustainable value / responsible innovation ;
- The ability to attract or retain new employees.
Implementing digital efficiency is a unique and cross-functional process, which must be linked to the organisation’s DNA to ensure that everyone is on board.
*Source: survey DIGITAL DEVELOPMENT AND ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES: A POSSIBLE COHABITATION? – Harris Interactive survey for SQLI