Third-party services like Redemtech's "Serious Good" initiative can facilitate charitable donations of used, end-of-life IT assets and minimize associated costs and risk, while also helping to bridge the "digital divide."
On 2 December 2010, Redemtech, a Columbus, Ohio-based firm that focuses on IT asset management and asset disposition, announced the launch of its Serious Good initiative, which brings together corporations and nonprofit partners to facilitate the donation of refurbished PCs as a way to bridge the rapidly growing "digital divide" between those with PCs and Internet access and those without.
Gartner has long advised enterprises to be cautious when donating used IT equipment to charitable organizations, because the process can be labor-intensive and requires careful planning, asset preparation and documentation. It can also expose the donor to significant liability if the recipient organization fails to dispose of the asset properly.
Redemtech’s Serious Good initiative can mitigate these traditional donation risks. Under this initiative, Redemtech will act as a third party to streamline the process from end to end, minimizing end-of-life liability risk by including no-charge recycling as a standard part of the process, and ensuring the recipient gets a high-value, working asset. To ensure that each donated PC is in proper working order, all of them will go through Redemtech's refurbishing process, which includes preloading Microsoft Office and a Windows operating system. Redemtech is a Microsoft Authorized Refurbisher (MAR).
These relatively low-risk IT asset donations can be attractive to an enterprise’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) area, as they can deliver a rich four-to-one or greater “giving ROI” ratio (a common CSR metric that indicates the ratio of a donation’s market value to its cost).
If you plan to make charitable donations of used, end-of-life IT assets, consider utilizing an experienced third party to facilitate the process and minimize its costs and risk.
Ensure that the prospective third party has a strong end-to-end track record, from efficient asset refurbishing to delivering the recipient a cost-effective, reliable working asset, to guaranteeing the asset’s proper, environmentally sound ultimate disposition without an additional charge.
Your IT organization should approach your enterprise’s CSR area to re-evaluate responsible charitable donations of end-user IT equipment facilitated by an experienced third-party provider capable of minimizing the risks associated with such donations.
"Hype Cycle for Sustainability and Green IT, 2010" — Sustainability is increasingly one of the main business priorities attracting market attention, investment and innovation, and technology development. By Simon Mingay, Bettina Tratz-Ryan and Stephen Stokes
"Magic Quadrant for North America Information Technology Asset Disposition" — This Magic Quadrant represents Gartner's initial coverage of this industry segment. By Rob Schafer
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