Sustainability is becoming increasingly important and makes remanufactured IT equipment an attractive usage model for companies that rely on efficiency and resource conservation. A recent study by CHG-MERIDIAN and YouGov shows how refurbishment is already being used by German companies today. […]
Pandemic, home office and remote working – the digitization pressure on companies is constantly increasing worldwide. But especially with IT devices such as smartphones or laptops, there is a high level of dynamics in technical development, which often requires a quick replacement of the devices. However, this puts a strain on the environment and creates a tension between digitization, sustainability and growth.
But just as important as digitization is important for modern companies, sustainable management is also an increasingly desired requirement by customers, partners and consumers. Legal regulations such as the EU Green Deal, but also a growing social expectation require companies to use electrical appliances more responsibly. A promising approach to resolve this contradiction between economy and ecology is the use of refurbished, i.e. genre-overhauled IT hardware. Devices are professionally reconditioned after their intended service life and are ready for at least a second use. In principle, the more frequently technical devices are used, the more positive their life cycle assessment will be. After all, manufacturing and logistics alone already account for a third of the emissions from new equipment.
A strong trend towards Use of refurbished IT equipment
For a current snapshot of the use of remanufactured IT, the technology manager and financial expert CHG-MERIDIAN commissioned the internationally renowned market and opinion research institute YouGov to inquire directly with the German companies. For this purpose, a total of 534 decision-makers from micro-enterprises, medium-sized companies and large corporations were surveyed on the use of remanufactured IT devices. The sample selection was representative of the size of the company. The respondents belong to middle management and upwards, and are distributed across industries from the private sector to the public sector to non-profit organizations.
The results suggest that the trend towards refurbished IT is becoming increasingly popular in practice, and the benefits are also being widely perceived at the management level: for example, 31 percent of respondents say that they are already using professionally refurbished IT devices today. In addition, four out of five managers know the entrepreneurial advantages that the use of refurbished hardware brings with it.
The reasons for use are manifold. More than half of the respondents see the greatest advantage in saving valuable resources during production as well as a lower price. 42 Percent cite the lower CO2 emissions of refurbished devices as an argument, while almost a third see refurbished IT hardware as a way to compensate for current supply bottlenecks in microchips, for example. One in five decision-makers also estimates the use as a gain for their own company reputation. Refurbished IT hardware seems to be gradually securing its place in everyday corporate life. Nevertheless, at 48 percent, almost half of the decision-makers surveyed fear decidedly outdated technical standards for professionally prepared IT hardware.
Sustainable management thanks to lifecycle management
“Remanufactured IT devices are not new products. But this is exactly their advantage, because they can reconcile economic and ecological concerns,“ explains Mathias Wagner, CEO of CHG-MERIDIAN. “Although the IT industry in particular is characterized by rapid innovation cycles, the concept of sustainability is increasingly determining the awareness of all market participants here as well.“
Wagner knows what he is talking about, because for more than 40 years CHG-MERIDIAN has been focusing on the circular economy and thus on holistic lifecycle management. To this end, the company offers sustainable usage concepts for IT, industry and the healthcare sector. In its own tech centers in Germany and Norway as well as through an international partner network, CHG-MERIDIAN prepares IT devices according to the highest quality standards for a second product life. In 2020 alone, there were around 880,000 devices that could be reprocessed and marketed.
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