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Dynamics AX Goes Green

Green IT, generally speaking, remains more hype than reality, and Microsoft -- unlike, say, IBM -- hasn't exactly been taking the lead in selling green technology to customers. But this week's release of the Environmental Sustainability Dashboard for the Dynamics AX enterprise resource planning suite is a big step in the green direction in Redmond. (And if you're scoring along at home, letter fans, that's the ESD for the Dynamics AX ERP suite.)

The dashboard is sort of business intelligence for energy use. It lets companies capture data on energy consumption and related costs and then use the data to analyze how they can save energy -- and money. It's all delivered with Microsoft's "role-tailored design," which shows users information based on their roles in a company.

"Customers are feeling increasing pressure to start to deal with this issue," Jennifer Pollard, senior product manager for Dynamics at Microsoft, told RCPU last week. She noted that, for instance, the French government now requires companies to report carbon dioxide emissions.

Pollard also noted that the "greening of the supply chain" has put the squeeze on midsize businesses, AX's target market. "Big companies are stepping up to the plate and saying, 'We are going to require our customers to supply this information to us,'" Pollard said. "That starts to really affect our target market, which is medium-sized business."

But the new AX dashboard isn't just about meeting regulations. It is, of course, about saving companies money by allowing them to cut energy costs. And, partners, it's free for AX customers, which is a nice little selling point for the whole AX suite.

"We really see in this down economy that the time is now to deliver this information so that our customers can benefit from it," Pollard said. "If you can measure it, you can manage it."

Posted by Lee Pender on February 10, 2009 at 11:55 AM


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