Cisco saves 90 million using TelePresence
Business travel is getting more costly everyday so many companies are turning to video conferencing to curb corporate travel. Cisco Systems has built a solution known as TelePresence. In this video, correspondent Sumi Das meets Laura Ipsen, co-chair of Cisco's Eco-Board. They talk about various green initiatives Cisco is developing such as a new Wi-Fi enabled city bus, energy efficient workspaces and their video conferencing solution. According to Ipsen, TelePresence has had a strong financial impact internally saving the company 90 million dollars in 18 months by reducing 20,000 meetings.
Sumi Das: Business travel is getting more costly everyday; fuel prices are soaring, and airlines are now charging for food service and baggage
So some companies are turning to video conferencing to curb corporate travel. Networking giant Cisco has built a solution known as TelePresence.
Laura Ipsen is co-chair with Cisco s Eco-Board. She oversees many of the green projects taking place at the company, from developing power management products to creating more efficient office workstations.
She says Cisco s new video conferencing system is good for the environment and the bottom line.
Laura Ipsen: We ve seen in the case of TelePresence that we ve probably, since November of 06, we ve eliminated 20,000 meetings with a savings of about 90 million dollars, if you say what did an employee not do in terms of travel, and how did that give back to the bottom line, and also reduce our greenhouse gases.
Sumi Das: David Hsieh is a senior marketing director with the company s TelePresence unit.
David Hsieh: What we wanted to do was use video communications and create a virtual meeting. And so we have these 3 plasma screens, as you can see behind me. These are full Hi-Def 1080p resolution monitors and we tried to keep this as simple as possible.
Sumi Das: Cisco is also developing new office environments to cut down on real estate costs.
Mark Golan is the executive in charge of the program. He says, office space is under-utilized-- increasing workspace efficiency, decreases energy use which in turn helps the environment.
Mark Golan: If we can use less square feet per person, we are going to use a lot less power because we have less space to have to heat, cool, light , clean and build for that matter.
Sumi Das: At Cisco, workers have options: they can telecommute, or work from an unassigned workspace, all the while connected through the company s network.
Since the program started, the financial benefits have been solid, saving Cisco roughly 35 percent on real estate expenses in areas where they re using these types of office environments.
Cisco is also going green in other areas, such as software that monitors energy consumption inside their labs and this Wi-Fi enabled bus that lets riders access the web with their phones and laptops.
Their hope is that people will get out of their cars and onto the city bus, cutting down on C02 emissions on the highway.
Ipsen says, for Cisco, the over-reaching vision is to use the company s networking technologies to fight global warming in the office and at home.
Laura Ipsen: We see the network as the platform for going green. The real neat thing we ve done is we ve now IP enabled over a system, to track the energy that we are using in our buildings globally. And down the road we see the power going into your home, so that when you leave in the morning, and say I want my house to go into green mode, the network will be that much more intelligent that you turn one switch and you power down the things that you need to power down in the home.
Sumi Das: Cisco showing what green can do. I m Sumi Das, reporting for BNET.