Performance Metrics: Dell Computer Corporation

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Dell Computer Corporation asserts a corporate responsibility philosophy geared towards “enabling human potential” through technology and making access to green technology easier for everyone, including the underprivileged (“Corporate responsibility,” 2012, para. 1-2). In order for this philosophy to result in meaningful practices and actions, it is necessary for Dell to utilize performance measures. As Epstein (2008) points out, “measurement is critically important because it links performance to the principles of sustainability and facilitates continuous improvement” (p. 164). Given the size and scope of Dell Computer Corporation, there are a multitude of relevant performance measures which could be used to assess the company’s …show more content…
Tod Arbogast, head of sustainability at Dell, points out that energy efficiency is becoming a critical factor in buying decisions for many customers due to concerns need for cost savings (“Dell aims to prove,” 2008). Therefore, performance metrics for energy efficiency are important for Dell to address.
Given the significance of energy use and emissions from technology, it is important that Dell, along with other IT companies, use performance metrics to monitor and address these factors in their sustainability plans. Epstein (2008) suggests many examples of measures that may be used. Performance metrics for Dell’s inputs in this area could include allocating funding for research and development into more energy efficient technology and monitoring energy efficiency and emissions through regulatory standards. Performance metrics for processes at Dell could potentially include measuring percentages of emissions from products, number of senior managers with specific environmental responsibilities, investing in cleaner technologies, and providing incentives for senior product developers to improve lifetime sustainability of products. Output metrics could include sustainability performance in volume and cost of energy use of products at the consumer level and stakeholder perceptions of “greener” products.
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