We take a practical and pragmatic approach to life and business in India. Our approach is based on a strong commitment to our local community. We aim to be a positive force and to help build a better society. We do this by making financial contributions, in particular to education using 10% of our profit. The new Companies Act of India now requires this of large companies – we began many years ago. In addition, we use renewable energy sources to reduce our environmental footprint and pay close attention to community and environmental issues. Supporting Our Community Green IT
The new Companies Act of India stipulates that large companies must use a small percentage of their profit for CSR activities. Although these criteria do not yet apply to us, at Gislen Software, we began to do this many years ago. We see our responsibilities to the community and the environment as a part of our holistic approach to running our business. Our international software business has grown, we have enjoyed success and we have a responsibility to help those who are not as fortunate. We wanted to give something back to our local community here in Chennai, so we founded the Little Lambs School which is helping underprivileged children in North Chennai to gain a good start in life. We also get our people involved in different projects and activities within the community. These include visiting schools, children’s homes and hospitals, becoming blood donors and collecting and distributing old clothes, toys and books. We have also, from the time the company was incorporated, had a strict policy against any form of corruption at any level.
Green IT means using IT resources in an efficient and environmentally responsible way. This is a challenge because the IT industry doesn’t use natural resources efficiently. Computers are resource-hungry through their entire life cycle – from production and use of raw materials, through heavy demands on power to run them and the costs of disposal or recycling at the end of their life. This goes for every single computer, server, laptop and tablet so we are careful about what we buy, how we use technology and have a strict recycling policy. Being in India adds different constraints. While India is investing in impressive solar and wind plants, the reality is that most electricity is still produced from coal. This has multiple adverse effects. The carbon footprint is high and the coal plants release particles which are dangerous to humans and nature. Power supply is sometimes unreliable, so most IT companies use diesel generators to manage power cuts and power failures. In 2012-2013 the power situation in our state, Tamil Nadu, was very poor. We had frequent long power cuts but we decided against investing in diesel generators. Instead we have invested in solar panels and energy-saving equipment including efficient air conditioning insulation and LED lights. We have also invested in video conference equipment to reduce the need for travelling. About 40% of our electricity now comes from the sun, and we can run our business, even during power cuts, thanks to battery backup. We are constantly looking for new ways to reduce our environmental footprint. Getting greener is a journey and ours is by no means over. However, we believe that outsourcing to us means using less energy.
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