September 17, 2009

Unified Communications Enable Mobile Work Forces, Results in Significant Environmental and Operational Benefits

A leader in environment sustainability, Sprint-enabled unified communications helps businesses "go green"
OVERLAND PARK, Kan., Sep 17, 2009 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- An increasing number of businesses are realizing the benefits of unified communications; they can serve customers better and faster, facilitate more productive interactions among employees and business partners, and ultimately save money. It allows businesses to equip employees with a complete set of tools to work virtually wherever and whenever they want, whether it's due to the mobile nature of a job, to ensure business continuity or to assist in implementing green initiatives.

In May, Sprint (NYSE: S) announced how it is collaborating with industry leaders Cisco, IBM and Microsoft Corp. to help enable unified communications for businesses and government agencies to increase productivity and customer satisfaction while driving down costs. Deploying unified communications can support green initiatives by enabling companies and employees to reduce their environmental impact through reduced commuting and travel. Businesses can even consider reducing office space, thus reducing the carbon emissions created by power consumption, by enabling a "work anywhere" situation for employees.

In 2005, Sprint started providing the tools necessary for certain employee groups to work nearly anywhere. When Sprint's deployment of unified communications began last year, it helped to accelerate mobile work force enablement by eliminating the desk phone and tying voice capabilities to a laptop via VoIP with unified voicemail. As a result, Sprint has reduced office space and employees can eliminate or reduce their commute, both leading to decreased carbon emissions.

Specifically -

  • Since 2005, Sprint has vacated 1 million square feet of office space because of its mobile workforce initiative. Looking only at electrical costs and average usage per square foot, Sprint has saved approximately $2.65 million and eliminated more than 62 million kilowatt hours (kWh), equating to more than 44,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide. This is equivalent to the carbon emissions from the electricity used in almost 6,200 homes in one year.
  • Approximately 4,000 Sprint employees are now designated as mobile workers. These individuals no longer must travel to an office but can work at home or another location convenient for them, which means a reduction in commuting. Using national averages and assuming these employees don't drive to work at least two days per week, approximately 12 million miles of commuting have been eliminated along with 5,590 metric tons of carbon dioxide. This is equivalent to the carbon emissions from more than 630,000 gallons of gas consumed.
  • Because of its unified communications deployment, Sprint is replacing 489 PBXs across the country. It conducted a study to calculate the environmental savings and determined that the replaced PBXs used approximately 13,500,000 kWh of power. The replacement system uses only 237,600 kWh - a 98 percent annual reduction in power consumed. This is a savings of approximately $1 million per year and 10,300 metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to greenhouse gas emissions from almost 1,900 passenger vehicles for a year.

"As a leader among telecommunications companies in environmentally responsible initiatives, Sprint is fully engaged in ensuring that it does its part to incorporate sustainability into every part of its business, from wireless recycling to renewable energy in its networks," said Paget Alves, president of Business Markets Group, Sprint. "Providing our customers tools to minimize their environmental footprint is also a priority. Unified communications can help accelerate the process of enabling a mobile work force, which brings significant environmental and operational benefits for our business customers."

Sprint recently announced new environmental initiatives, including becoming the first U.S. wireless carrier to establish a set of environmental design criteria for future devices and a commitment to reduce paper usage by 30 percent during the next five years. Sprint also has an aggressive industry-first goal of reaching a 90 percent phone collection rate for reuse/recycling, compared with annual wireless device sales, by 2017. Since 2001, Sprint wireless recycling programs have diverted nearly 18 million cell phones from landfills for reuse or recycling. Wireless recycling is one of Sprint's key environmental priorities.

For more information about Sprint's green initiatives visit www.sprint.com/green, or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/SprintGreenNews.

Sprint's enablement of unified communications, leveraging the company's Global MPLS network in combination with Sprint SIP Trunking and Mobile Integration, is available through Sprint's newly formed Business Markets Group (BMG). Composed of more than 4,000 sales, support, marketing and operations personnel, BMG is solely dedicated to enterprise, general business and public sector customers. BMG delivers wireless, wireline and converged solutions for companies, drawing on the nation's most dependable 3G mobile broadband network,* 4G capabilities that are well ahead of Sprint's competition, the fastest national push-to-talk network,** and a comprehensive solutions portfolio of devices and applications.

For more information on Sprint converged solutions, visit www.sprint.com/convergence or contact your Sprint account team. To join in the latest discussions and learn more about business solutions available through wireline convergence, visit the Seamless Enterprise at www.seamlessenterprise.com.


Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two wireless networks serving almost 49 million customers at the end of the second quarter of 2009; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international walkie-talkie capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The company's customer-focused strategy has led to improved first call resolution and customer care satisfaction scores. For more information, visit www.sprint.com.

* "Dependable" based on independent, third-party drive tests for 3G data connection success, session reliability and signal strength for the top 50 most populous markets from January 2008 to May 2009. Not all services available on 3G and coverage may default to separate network when 3G unavailable.

** "Fastest" based on initial call setup time.

SOURCE: Sprint

Stephanie Greenwood, 913-794-3658

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