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Type Green IT
Authors Matthew Urquhart
Location Kingston, Canada
Status Verified
Verified by Queen's University Green IT Group
Uses saving energy
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Replacing your current desktop configuration with a laptop and docking station can save a great deal of money and electricity, as well as increasing productivity due to the inherent mobility in laptops. In general, desktop computers use much more energy than notebooks or netbooks. Even an EnergyStar certified desktop can use up to 160 kWh of power in one year, while the average EnergyStar certified notebook uses 37 kWh. May offices may be wary of switching to laptops simply because they are used to having a desktop with a large monitor and external hardware, such as keyboard and mouse. This obstacle is overcome by using a laptop with a docking station. The monitor, keyboard, mouse, printer, etc. that are connected to a desktop computer can all be connected to a docking station. The laptop can be easily connected or disconnected from the docking station which means there will be no change in how employees operate their workstations, other than a significant reduction in electricity. Laptops also carry the added benefit ow allowing employees to take work home or on the road which increases productivity and adds value to your company.

ECM Inputs[edit | edit source]

  • Number of work weeks per year
  • Hourly wage of IT personnel and amount of time required to re-image computers
  • Replacement cost of current computers
  • Number of computers currently in use by your company
  • Hours per day computers are in sleep mode, on, etc.
  • Power consumption of current computers
  • Number of current computers to be replaced with laptops and docking stations
  • Cost of replacement laptops and docking stations
  • Power consumption of replacement computers
  • Decision of whether or not current computers are due for a replacement or not

Caution: The following inputs can have a severe impact on the outcome of this analysis. Consult the Assumptions & References in the document before entering a value. Consider a sort of pilot project by which your employees have an opportunity to log or report the amount of time they use their laptops outside of the office in a typical time frame.

  • Estimation of number of hours of work that will be conducted outside the office on laptops
  • Value of productive time to your company

ECM Assumptions[edit | edit source]

  • The inherent mobility of a laptop computer will lead to increases in productivity for your organization. The magnitude of this productivity increase is heavily dependent on the inputs you enter in your analysis, so be sure to consult the full Assumptions & References included in the document.
  • Average values for cost and energy/power consumption for laptop models are provided. By default, the number of docking stations is equal to the number of laptops purchased.
  • Energy rates and environmental emissions are provided for Kingston, Ontario and may need to be modified depending on your location.
  • Usage patterns of employees will dictate actually how much energy their computers use.
  • Risk-free rates of return are calculated based on Treasury Bill rates guaranteed by the Canadian government.

Download this calculator[edit | edit source]

The most recent version of this calculator, as confirmed by the Queen's Green IT Group (original constructors of the document), is available here:

See also[edit | edit source]

For a complete analysis for your organization, you may also want to check out the following ECM calculators:

For more information on this project, check the Queen's Green IT ECM homepage.

References[edit | edit source]

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