Existing enterprise – Reducing travel

Published on April 28, 2012 in Services
Capgemini operates in the consultancy industry where business travel is the norm. A key assumption of the business model is that the right skills and experience of employees are matched with clients’ business needs, regardless of location.


Capgemini teams work alongside clients to deliver “business change”. And clients, quite naturally, expect to see the people whose fees they are paying.

Recognising that business travel comprised 30% of company’s total carbon footprint, Capgemini chose to integrate three themes that are usually tackled in isolation:

• Avoiding and reducing carbon emissions from business travel
• Reducing costs to both clients and Capgemini
• Addressing employee ‘lifestyle’ challenges from significant amounts of travel



Attributing cost savings to travel that you haven’t taken is difficult, but according to the auditors of WWF’s “One in Five Challenge” – which Capgemini recently met – the company’s spend on air travel alone fell by £1m in 2009. “That’s good for us and it’s good for our clients,” says Tony Deans, Capgemini’s UK CFO. “But it’s not just clients”, he continues, “Our people expect to work for a company that takes its environmental performance seriously. Few employees would rather spend time on the road than being with the people who are important to them. And battling through airports isn’t productive for many of us.”


Working in collaboration

Some of the client based challenges around travel are common across the industry, and may require longer term solutions. As a founder member of the Professional Services Sustainability Initiative (PSSI), an industry forum set up to identify ways to address common sustainability challenges, Capgemini can debate and share leading practice around business travel with their competitors.


Social and environmental impact

• Carbon emissions from travel fell by 14.5% (2007 -2009), from 17,524 tonnes to 14,977 tonnes.
• The average emissions profile of the company car fleet has improved 18% since 2006, from 168 CO2 g/km to 137 CO2 g/km.
• Achieved WWF-UK’s “One in Five Challenge” (reducing business flights by 20% in 5 years). A founder sponsor of the Challenge, Capgemini achieved this in the first year, reducing flights by 4,508.
• Video conferencing utilisation rates have approximately doubled.


The process

Capgemini created a cross-functional TravelWell team, led by the CFO and resourced with people from Travel, Procurement, IT, HR, Facilities, Communications and Sustainability. They are charged with designing and delivering the tools, technologies and policies to enable business travellers to reduce their carbon emissions by giving them more choices about whether and how they travel.

The key aspects of this approach are:

1) Travelling less – providing reliable technology based alternatives to non-essential travel; and
2) Travelling differently – encouraging the use of lower-carbon forms of transport for travel that is unavoidable.
3) Be Well, Be Safe, Be Green, Be Smart is an engagement programme focused on giving employees information and tools to help them understand and measure the impact of their travel. Examples are road shows to educate and encourage the use of videoconferencing and web-based collaborative tools, or for unavoidable travel, on-line rail booking, travel guides and additional passenger business mileage.


Website : www.uk.capgemini.com


Please note our caveats on including these existing enterprise stories.


Credits : Image source: Fuel pumps by m_bartosch


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