At Ford the commitment to energy efficiency and saving money now starts at the office computer. Under a new program called PC Power Management, the power settings on Windows laptops and desktop computers are centrally controlled to reduce energy waste and optimize software updates. A managed shutdown of computer systems not in use, especially overnight and on weekends, further reduces energy use. At the same time, the system ensures all computers connected to the Ford Intranet are awake and able to receive software deliveries during off hours, decreasing downtime during working hours due to software loads. The savings to the company on power cost alone is expected to top $1.2 million annually when the system is fully implemented.

By reducing PC power consumption, Ford also stands to reduce its carbon footprint by an estimated 16,000 to 25,000 metric tons annually. PC Power Management is being rolled out to Ford computer users across the U.S. this month. It will be migrated to Ford operations around the world later in the year. The cost savings and reduced carbon footprint are obtained by developing “Power Profiles” for each PC in the company. With its power profile enabled, each PC monitors its usage patterns and determines when it can be turned off. If the user is working late, he or she will be alerted of the approaching power down and given the opportunity to delay it. In addition, the PC is able to detect when a Microsoft Office product is active and is able to save open documents before shutting down in case the user is not present.