IDC Manufacturing Insights Expands Sustainability Research and Unveils New Reports on Sustainability Services and Business Benefits of Sustainability ; New research indicates manufacturers are achieving significant revenue growth and cost savings by going green and rates vendor sustainability services

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. – August 24, 2009 – IDC Manufacturing Insights today announced it has expanded its sustainability research and unveils two new studies to assess the current market. The first, Vendor Assessment: Sustainability Strategy Services Guide for Manufacturers (Doc #MI219421), provides technology services buyers with an analysis of 14 large professional service firms that provide strategy-level sustainability services to manufacturers, and identifies the decision-making criteria for selection. The second report, Seeing the Business Benefits of Sustainability: Revenue, Profit, and Inventory Management (Doc #MI219564), reveals that manufacturers that quickly develop their green initiatives will recognize a significant impact on revenue growth and cost-savings.

According to the new research, current sustainability offerings are still emerging and there are areas that vendors must improve. Nevertheless, vendors can still help manufacturers move faster toward green initiatives, allowing manufacturers to yield revenue growth as well as considerable cost savings.

The research was designed to help vendors, services providers, and systems integrators that aspire to switch from Green IT to IT for Green services make informed decisions, as well as help end users understand what other manufacturers are doing in sustainability, how they compare, and how to make strategic and informed vendor selections.

"At this stage, many engagements are being handed to consultants that are already working closely with manufacturers," said Kimberly Knickle, practice director, Emerging Agenda, IDC Manufacturing Insights. "That doesn't mean they aren't skilled in sustainability, but that the evaluation process is not yet as rigorous as we expect it will become. Evaluations will receive more attention because of the increasing complexity and cost and the C-level visibility of sustainability projects. Being a partner to manufacturers and understanding their business will remain important, but we also see other factors increasing in importance, including an understanding of global and regional dynamics and project management, as projects touch an increasingly large number of participants."

IDC Manufacturing Insights found in the Vendor Assessment: Sustainability Strategy Services Guide for Manufacturers report that the most important factors in the vendor selection process include the following:

* Investments to incorporate a comprehensive sustainability evaluation into services they already offer, such as adding carbon trade-offs to supply chain assessments or more comprehensive life-cycle assessment or ecodesign in product life-cycle management projects;

* Deep expertise in regional regulations or publicly influenced sustainability practices in a specific region;

* Strong knowledge of the dynamics in industry segments; for example, the cost, customer, and competitive pressures in the fast-moving consumer goods industry, and

* The ability to perform environmental audits or reviews using globally recognized standards such as GRI with feedback or recommendations of company or industry best practices.

As the sustainability services market expands, IDC Manufacturing Insights recommends that as manufacturers evaluate service providers they should ensure the vendor's team has a deep knowledge of the firm's specific industry segment within manufacturing, as well as knowledge of the regulations in the regions the company operates, including the locations of suppliers and customers. In the short term, manufacturers should evaluate a vendor's sustainability services in the context of what is needed today. In the longer term, as the market continues to emerge, manufacturers should evaluate a vendor based on how sustainability is incorporated into many of its traditional offerings.

To arrange a one-on-one briefing with an IDC Manufacturing Insights analyst, please contact Sarah Murray at 781-794-3214 781-794-3214 or In addition, the full reports are available to qualified members of the media. For more information on obtaining or purchasing reports, email

About IDC Manufacturing Insights

IDC Manufacturing Insights provides business and IT decision-makers with fact-based research and analysis to inform and support critical business decisions. The global independent research and advisory firm closely follows processes associated with the design, development and distribution of goods across markets including Discrete Manufacturing, Process Manufacturing, High Tech/Electronics Manufacturing, Consumer Packaged Goods and Retail. IDC Manufacturing Insights' research and analysis is critical for end-users, as well as hardware and software vendors, service providers, and purveyors of IT outsourcing. IDC Manufacturing Insights is headquartered in Framingham, Mass. Visit[] for more information. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.