Episode 26 – HP and Sustainability – Going Green With a Tech Leader

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Connection

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This is the Transcript of the Techsperience Podcast – Episode 26

Penny Conway:

Welcome to another episode of Connection’s TechSperience. I’m your host, Penny Conway, product manager for Workplace Transformation. And today, we are talking about a topic that none of us can really seem to get away from in our everyday lives, and that is sustainability/climate change/saving the planet.

We’ve been seeing across the board, initiatives on a personal level as well as a corporate level. And today, we are going to dive into what is the responsibility of big tech companies or small tech companies and the personal responsibility we all have to save the planet.

So, I have a group here with me today from our Connection HP team. Jane, Katie and Michelle. Jane, why don’t we start, with you? Introduce yourself and what your role is here at Connection, and why you’re here today.

Jane Garrity:

Sure! Thanks, Penny. I’m Jane Garrity, I’m a Product Line Manager for Client, Print and Peripherals here at Connection. Thank you for having me. I am here to talk about how I practice sustainability in my life and how we can do that on a corporate level.

Penny Conway:

Excellent. Katie?

Katie MacKenzie:

Hi, I’m Katie MacKenzie. I am a Product Manager for Personal Systems at Connection. And I’m here today to talk about, how we can become more sustainable within our community as well as in the corporate world that we work in today, and how we can relate it to our everyday lives.

Penny Conway:

And Michelle.

Michelle Petrovic:

Hi, I’m Michelle Petrovic. I’m the Product Manager for Print and Supplies. I’m really excited to talk about what I do for sustainability and how I bring that into the office, and how large corporations can do that, too.

Penny Conway:

Awesome. The first place I want to start with you guys really is we work for a corporation; we represent big corporations. And we’re going to get to that. But I want to sort of, there’s a big trend now. And I will say that it is trendy to be sustainable, to watch out for the environment to do our part. What are some of the things that you guys are doing in your own lives to kind of drive that sustainability message. Do you care about it? And if so, how much? Who wants to take it first?

Michelle Petrovic:

Some of the things that I do is I did get on the anti-straw bandwagon.

Penny Conway:

Ooh!

Michelle Petrovic:

I know.

Penny Conway:

It’s a hot topic for me, Michelle. (laughing)

Michelle Petrovic:

I know. I know it’s a hot button topic. But, I found a company that makes a collapsible straw that comes with a little cleaner and a little carrying case. And I carry that with me. And if someone asks if I want a straw, I say, “No.” I really try to… That’s the big one, I try to not use straws.

Jane Garrity:

I would say for me, one of my biggest ways I practice sustainability in my own life is within the environment itself. So I’m a big hiker. I’m always in the mountains and in the woods and in the forest. And, so leave no trace is really the best way we can hold our environments and keep it sustained, right? So, any trash you have in, you carry in, you carry out. You leave things where you found them, like, stacking rocks is frowned upon within that-

Penny Conway:

Really?

Jane Garrity:

… within the nature community. Yes.

Penny Conway:

I’ve always… So, can I interrupt you for one second-

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

… because I’ve always wondered about the stacking rocks, like, all the way down to me driving here to work. I passed stacked rocks on the highway.

Michelle Petrovic:

What does it, what does it mean?

Jane Garrity:

Well, really, stacked rocks, what it really means, at the top of mountains, right? They’re called cairns. And they are stacked there as way points on a trail. So, you can stay on the trail because there’s no trees and there’s no markers if you’re above tree line. So, when you’re below tree line, when people stack rocks they think, you know, it could be off trail, it can be on trail, it might… Who knows, right? So it’s really confusing to people that understand that stack rocks is actually a map. You know, it’s, it’s a point on the map. It’s pretty important to not really stack those just across a riverbed or things like that.

Penny Conway:

I guess so (laughing).

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. That’s something, I’ve seen painted rocks out in the wilderness on mountains, and that really irritates me, too. It’s like, “Waa!” just let it stay, stay the way nature should.

Penny Conway:

Right. Everyone wants to leave their personal mark on everything.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. And when we’re out there, or when you’re out there, and you’re out there with your family, it’s the last thing you want to see. You’re out there to you enjoy nature and everything that it has to give.

Penny Conway:

Right.

Jane Garrity:

The smell, the beauty, the wonders of it. And so, when you see stacked rocks or painted rocks and things that shouldn’t be there, a cigarette butt, or an empty water bottle, take those things with you. Don’t leave them there in the environment.

Penny Conway:

Right. And, Katie, how about you?

Katie MacKenzie:

So, me, along with the rest of the world, I’m sure, I’m trying to eliminate plastic water bottles in my life. I always have and while we’re sitting here, somebody is drinking out of a plastic water bottle. (laughing)

Penny Conway:

I’m drinking out of a plastic water bottle.

Katie MacKenzie:

But, ever since I was probably 10 years old, I’ve been using a water bottle that I just stick in the fridge to keep cold, and whether it’s faucet water, which we know that’s probably not the best use of drinking water, but just water in general, I don’t like plastic water bottles. It really irritates me when people… It’s just a simple thing to change, and it’s a simple way to save money, but it’s also really good for the environment.

Jane Garrity:

I’m with you there, Katie. I have one of those filter pitchers at my house as well. I hate water bottles as well, plastic water bottles.

Penny Conway:

Me and our producer Rob are feeling very judged right now (laughs).

Jane Garrity:

We’re looking at their water bottles as we’re saying this. (laughing)

Michelle Petrovic:

I can say I learned something today. (laughs)

Penny Conway:

I’m already learning. (laughs) The fact that I just said that, that we’re feeling very judged, I think that’s one of those things around sustainability right now is, if you were not hopping on the bandwagon of doing the easy things, like not using straws or using paper straws, or not using a plastic water bottle. Do you think people are almost being peer pressured into being more conscientious? Or do you still think there’s a massive amount of people like me that are still doing it regardless?

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. I definitely don’t think people are feeling peer pressured, or at least, I haven’t seen that. I think that still very, society still uses all of these. It’s a matter of convenience, right? You can go to any convenience store and get something in a bottle you can get. It’s a plastic soda, it’s a plastic bottle with a water or whatever have you. So it’s a matter of convenience.

Jane Garrity:

And as much as I hate using them, every now and then, I’m thirsty, my water jug in my car is empty, so I go to a gas station, and I buy a water bottle, right? And then I recycle it, obviously. But I still think that in today’s world, it’s a matter of convenience. And I don’t think people are really judged on it.

Michelle Petrovic:

I actually think the flip side. I actually get judged a lot for using my straw.

Penny Conway:

Oh, so I probably, I’m one of those people that judges you as well, you know? (laughing).

Michelle Petrovic:

If you did, it wasn’t openly, I had no idea. (laughing) But I’ll go out with friends, and I’ll take out my straw. And if they’re not on the anti-straw bandwagon, I’ve had them be like, “Really? You brought your own straw?” (laughing) But then I also have, like, yesterday, I was traveling with my brother. And we went somewhere that has compostable straws. So, they’re not paper. They still feel like plastic straws, but they’re compostable. So, they will biodegrade at some point. And he actually judged me for taking a straw because my handy straw was not clean. So, I have some people that are there to kind of back me up and others that are like is really one straw going to make a difference?

Penny Conway:

Well, do you think it does? Do you think one straw… I mean, obviously, it’s like your one straw, but how many straws would you consume in a lifetime versus using a metal or a plastic straw?

Michelle Petrovic:

I use a metal straw every day. Just my one metal straw is 365 straws that I would be using throughout the year.

Penny Conway:

Hmm. It’s a good way to think about.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah, if you use one every day.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah. And they’re definitely not the easiest to clean, but they all come with a little brush that fits right in there and allows you to clean it. So I normally gather them for the week, and do it all at one time.

Penny Conway:

See, that’s always been my thing about the straws that you travel with, even the water bottles that you travel with is the amount of gunk, we’ll say. (laughs) Jane’s face. (laughing)

Jane Garrity:

They’ll do.

Penny Conway:

If you’re not properly cleaning something.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

Okay, you’ve made a less of an impact on the environment, but now you have botulism. (laughing)

Michelle Petrovic:

That was a jump (laughing).

Penny Conway:

But that’s the way a lot of people might think not that they’re going to get sick from using that, but is what I’m going to do a big enough impact where I’m going to sacrifice maybe convenience or the ability to clean it, wherever I am on the go and things like that. I think that’s what, on an individual level, people are wondering if the risk and the reward, but if the payoff is worth the sacrifice.

Katie MacKenzie:

I would also say that I don’t know if it’s necessarily peer pressure, but kind of the direction the society is going in. And you show up to a restaurant, and they don’t even give you straws anymore, right?

Penny Conway:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Katie MacKenzie:

Then just off the straw topic, the town that I do grocery shopping just recently banned plastic bags. So they charge a five cent fee for use of a paper bag. But if you bring your own reusable bags, it’s… it costs nothing to you. So, it’s not necessarily peer pressure from people that you surround yourself with every day, but it’s really like the direction society is going, and where we’re kind of being forced to go.

Penny Conway:

That’s a good point. It’s less about personal choice now and more corporate choice, really-

Katie MacKenzie:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

… or a state choice because I think that’s really the next level of our conversation is, we as individuals, I think people have always been trying to do their part, people who care about it, people maybe who aren’t peer pressured enough into doing it. So now, there’s a, there’s legal action being taken place. Like in certain cities or even states, I think… Is it Vermont and Maine, and I think Washington might be on the list, bags aren’t allowed. It’s just not part of their, like they’re putting laws in place to prevent this in hopes to reduce their impact, versus it being a personal choice anymore.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah! Well, I remember and I’m gonna probably date myself a little bit but, you know, as a young girl growing up, we didn’t have plastic bags. You could pay for paper bags, or my mom brought her own canvas bags went back then. And if we did get paper bags, you use them on your textbooks-

Penny Conway:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Jane Garrity:

… right to cover your textbooks for school.

Penny Conway:

Yeah.

Jane Garrity:

Or you, you use them for something else. You use them in your fireplace or, or whatever else. You could even bring those paper bags back to the store and recycle them there and reuse them. So it’s really funny, watching the, the way the times have changed, whereas, when I was a little girl, there was no plastic bags, and now there’s all plastic bags everywhere, right? Just kind of interesting things, and as well as there was cloth diapers. Now there’s disposable diapers, you know? So we really have turned into a society of convenience, which is not a bad thing, but I think we just… I think now, we’re a society of wanting to go back, right, to the way it used to be so that we can really sustain our globe.

Penny Conway:

Right.

Katie MacKenzie:

I think you bring up a good point, Jane, because you go back to when we actually did have actual textbooks that we needed to use. Now, we use all technology.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Katie MacKenzie:

So, we’re actually missing out on a big piece of recycling when it comes to reusing those paper bags that we don’t have the opportunity to do anymore because we have the technology to use instead. We’re no longer covering our textbooks with paper.

Michelle Petrovic:

That’s interesting.

Penny Conway:

Right. The opportunities to reuse are becoming more and more limited as technology becomes more prevalent.

Katie MacKenzie:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

Switching gears a little bit on the corporate responsibility. So, I read an interesting stat that said on the line of what can our individual actions do and the greater impact of the world and sustainability. A recent report actually found that just 100 companies were responsible for 71% of the global emissions since 1988, which is really interesting as we are like, “I’m not going to use straws anymore,” when just 100 companies are really responsible for such an output.

Another study said that, United States companies are responsible for 70% of the electricity usage throughout the entire country, which rapidly grows every day with things like server rooms and just the sheer size of corporations that are in the country alone, which really starts to make us evaluate what we’re doing as a company at Connection because we’re here in New England, but we’re also in South Dakota, we’re in Ohio, we’re in Maryland, we’re in Florida, and we have people all over the country and starting to look at what companies like ours and what our partners are doing from a sustainability point of view.

If companies, just 100, have the ability to, you know, output 71% of our global emissions, I imagine on every scale, when it comes to energy consumption, they’re a huge play. So, Jane, I know that obviously, sustainability is a huge part of really your life, and how you live. But what are some of the things that Connection is doing around sustainability just to reduce our impact overall?

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. I mean, I think I can tell you just a handful of things or a couple of things. I mean, one of the things that we do is we actually sponsored trail maintenance. So, the Monadnock-Sunapee Greenway Trail is actually sponsored by Connection.

Penny Conway:

Oh, wow!

Jane Garrity:

So, that means cleaning it, maintaining it, etc. Another fun fact we just replaced all of our lights within our corporate headquarters to LED lights. So, it emits less energy. It’s more efficient. And it’s a little bit brighter. It’s nice.

Penny Conway:

I was going to say I can see-

Jane Garrity:

Yeah (laughs).

Penny Conway:

… everyone more clearly now that I used to be able to.

Jane Garrity:

Exactly.

Katie MacKenzie:

It’s much better on the eyes, too.

Jane Garrity:

And then I think my favorite fun fact about Connection and recycling is that we have a very large building here at our headquarters. And we actually will recycle our rainwater that comes off the roof, and we water and fertilize the grass that are on… that’s in the common area at Connection. So, those are fun.

Penny Conway:

That is kind of fun. Now, this is going to be ignorant. So, I also work for this company, (laughing) but we use, also, a sprinkler system, or is that all the water that’s run through and comes out of the irrigation system?

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. I’m not sure if it’s all the water, so I’m not the expert on that. I don’t know how much of that is recycled rainwater versus the town water. But, you know, we do have in Merrimack, where we are in New Hampshire, it is an odd or even day, if you want to water your yard or your grounds. We adhere to that. And so I’m pretty… I’m not sure what the portion is. It probably depends on how much it rains. But-

Penny Conway:

Yeah.

Jane Garrity:

But, so I know it’s a probably a portion of, of rainwater and town water.

Penny Conway:

Wow, that’s really cool. And I know that we’re taking steps constantly to try to bring in new initiatives and things like that. And you guys, as a team, have really been focused on that because the partner that you all represent, HP, side note, I do, too, (laughing). But HP is a partner that, quite honestly, as we were doing research around this, and you’d go to Google and you type in most sustainable tech companies, uh, HP makes every single list. Sustainability has been part of their mission for quite some time, well before I think it was a fan.

If I remember correctly, when the company was founded, it was part of their values. And their mission was to make sure that as they grew this big tech company, that they always had sustainability really at the core of their message. So, what are some of the things that HP is doing both because they have a huge print business. It’s what they really are mostly known for, or were first known for. And printing uses paper. It uses toner. That toner has to be in a cartridge. And so, sustainability is not the first thing you think of when you think of printing. So, what are some of the things that HP Print is doing that puts them on this list of one of the most sustainable tech companies?

Katie MacKenzie:

Yes. So, just from an HP standpoint, they’re creating more energy-efficient products across the board. So whether that’s print hardware or any of the personal systems, as well as the supplies in general, which is the ink and toner. They’re also creating a lot more recycled paper to put in their printers, which is actually better for the printer, and then recycled ink cartridges and cartridges. In fact the ink and toner car- cartridges, 30% of them are used from recycled plastic.

Related: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle with HP

Penny Conway:

So, looking specifically at the supply side of the house, like Katie said, that they’re using recycled material to build their cartridges. But how are they kind of closing that loop and making sure that they can use, like are they using random plastic? Are they using plastic from their toners and cartridges that exist? How’s that work?

Michelle Petrovic:

It’s a combination of a, a couple different places where they can get their plastics. And the biggest one that they support is a customer shipping back their supplies. So, the business class supplies come with a shipping label, so customers are able to pack it up, whether it’s one box or a, a full pallet, they’re able to ship back to HP for recycling. So I think that’s really interesting. It’s something different that most print companies aren’t doing.

Penny Conway:

Right, right. And how easy, right? And I’m not even sure if that’s something a lot of people even realized.

Michelle Petrovic:

I didn’t know until this summer. It’s fantastic.

Penny Conway:

Yeah, to be able to just open up your toner, put a new one in, slap a label on it, and ship it back.

Michelle Petrovic:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Penny Conway:

And I… My understanding is they’ve been doing that for years, and a way to close their loop. Now, what about the rest of the stuff that doesn’t come back? How do they.. Where are they getting that kind of material and plastic from?

Michelle Petrovic:

They’re actually getting it from ocean-bound plastics. So, in countries that don’t necessarily have the recycling infrastructure that we have here in the US, a lot of the plastic ends up in the water. Specifically, the Atlantic Ocean, and HP will gather the plastics off the coast of Haiti and utilize that for their products, which is awesome because now they’re also creating jobs for people in Haiti. They’re able to make the cartridges there, as well as doing something good for the environment.

Penny Conway:

You know, I’m going to have like an aha moment here with you about plastic straws and water bottles (laughing) because, because I think that’s the disconnect when you look at America and Americans. And even in Europe, most of the places, in any developed country is we don’t see it, we don’t see the trash. We have landfills. We have someone stop at our house and pick up our recycling that we put in a big blue or green bin.

Um, and I think the extent of seeing straws and plastic and its environmental impact is us going to the beach up on the coast and going, “Oh my god, somebody didn’t throw away their cup.” And like that’s littering is our view of an environmental impact. But countries like Haiti, they don’t have the infrastructure that we have. All of the trash that we spread around, along with everybody else’s trash is making its way onto their shores. And they’re the one left to clean up our entire mess, and we don’t ever have to see it ever.

When I was doing some research about what HP was doing, they’re helping, they’re using Haitians and the infrastructure in Haiti to help people, basically building a supply chain in another country that’s employing them, that’s cleaning up the plastic. And it’s kind of bringing it full circle. Not to say, like I won’t ever use a plastic straw again. But I don’t think people realize that, right? Like we’re so spoiled, in some ways, just with the sheer infrastructure behind us every single day that we don’t think about what’s happening in other, in other countries as a result of our garbage.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah. And I think the other thing that people don’t realize about the plastic straws is that they’re so small, and they’re so lightweight, that most of the US recycling plants can’t filter them out. So, we now have single stream recycling in most locations. And so, you can throw in cans, um, glass bottles, uh, or plastic bottles all into the same container with cardboard, everything. And when it goes to the landfill or the recycling station, they have ways based on the weight of the material to sort it out by what it is. And plastic water bottle or plastic straws, I should say, are too light and too small for those machines to actually sort them out, so they still end up in waterways or in landfills or something like that.

Penny Conway:

Oh, I had no idea.

Katie MacKenzie:

Me neither.

Michelle Petrovic:

That’s why I’m so anti-straw. (laughing).

Penny Conway:

I guess.

Jane Garrity:

Think of the turtles. (laughing)

Penny Conway:

You won’t see me judging you when you take out your metal straw. That’s for sure.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. I think the one thing about the plastic straws and if you go to a place like Starbucks, right, they don’t have any straws left to Starbucks, they have a new cover-

Penny Conway:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Jane Garrity:

That’s like a sippy cup.

Penny Conway:

Yep.

Jane Garrity:

But the cup is plastic. So, if you go to other places, like in Europe. I was in Italy a couple years ago, and not everywhere, but there are some places that if you don’t bring your own cup, you don’t get a coffee. And if they’re going to serve your coffee, it’s in a glass mug, like there’s no paper. So, I love the whole straw idea. Now, how do we get rid of the plastic cup?

Michelle Petrovic:

We think that, where like my brain is, you called out Starbucks and how they got rid of the plastic straws for the most part, and their reusable cups. I hope more companies do this, but their reusable cups are about $3. And then every time you use it, you get 10 cents off of your drink. Now, it’s not as convenient if you’re going through the drive-thru or you’re mobile ordering. But if you are going through the drive-thru, you can still use it. So, I mean, why not just buy a $3 cup, or bring your own, in that way, you have your own cup and something more to clean, but it won’t end up in a landfill.

Penny Conway:

In the landfill or in the ocean.

Jane Garrity:

Right.

Michelle Petrovic:

Or in the ocean. Yeah.

Penny Conway:

Yeah. Jane said it, we value convenience-

Jane Garrity:

Yeah, absolutely.

Penny Conway:

… over anything else. But if there were certain regulations put in place, and I never got the Starbucks straw thing because of that, like you’re now… But Michelle makes a good point.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

If it can be weighed and it can’t be seen-

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

… but this plastic top can be, then at least, it’s being sorted and it’s moved around appropriately.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yes.

Jane Garrity:

Right.

Michelle Petrovic:

I do think that the plastic straw of today is the can, the plastic can holders of the ’90s. Um-

Jane Garrity:

Yes.

Michelle Petrovic:

So-

Jane Garrity:

You know the plastic can holders is six-pack plastic holders.

Michelle Petrovic:

The six-pack can holders.

Penny Conway:

Oh!

Katie MacKenzie:

Oh! (laughing)

Jane Garrity:

But it changed.

Penny Conway:

There’s going to be a whole generation that doesn’t know what those are. (laughing)

Michelle Petrovic:

They still exist.

Penny Conway:

Yeah.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Michelle Petrovic:

But I think they’re a little more… Like, if you go to Trader Joe’s, they’re, they’re more solid. So, they don’t just have that ring. And so the, like, they used to say there was… We get caught on an animal-

Jane Garrity:

Birds.

Penny Conway:

Yeah.

Michelle Petrovic:

… and then they would grow into it, or it’d be around its beak or whatever. And now they’re saying the same thing about straws.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah. And we used to have to cut those before we throw them in the garbage. We have to cut the plastic.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yes, right. I would cut every hole on them, like… because I was probably seven or eight when I found out about it on Nickelodeon or the Disney Channel or something. (laughing) And I literally cut every single hole because I was like, “I don’t know what’s too small.” (laughing) Like, at what point is it, is it too small for an animal to get caught on it?

Penny Conway:

Oh! That’s it. That’s actually a really good comparison-

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

… because I almost… now that I think about it, I bought a six pack of bottles-

Michelle Petrovic:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Penny Conway:

… a couple of weekends ago. And it was on that because there’s no way that you can hold six bottles in a different way, but the, the cans have now had that, like, hard plastic top on it.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah.

Jane Garrity:

Yeah.

Penny Conway:

Um, but didn’t even, like, seamless. It’s not like I miss them.

Michelle Petrovic:

Right.

Penny Conway:

I can’t carry around my six-pack anymore. I’m sure, but I’m sure there was a ton of people at that point that were like, “Don’t get rid of my six-pack holder. What am I going to do? Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.” But that’s an interesting comparison. I never even thought of it that way.

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah.

Jane Garrity:

Well, there’s some that still actually come in the cardboard holder, which is probably easier to recycle than the plastic.

Michelle Petrovic:

Oh, yeah.

Penny Conway:

Oh, yeah.

Michelle Petrovic:

For sure.

Penny Conway:

Yeah. I know HP is really interesting when it comes to sustainability. And a lot of people think that, “Oh, if I’m going to be more sustainable, it’s going to cost me more. I have to redo my lighting. I have to start manufacturing things in a different way. I have to”… And all of that, ultimately, is going to cost me before it makes me money. And that’s what all tech companies are looking to do. But I was really, (laughs) really interested when I read that HP sustainability initiatives have actually had positive effects on their profitability. Their sustainable impact programs drove more than $972 million of new revenue in HP, um, back in 2018, which was a 35% year-over-year increase.

Penny Conway:

HP being able to be one of the most sustainable companies, but to also be profitable in their sustainability message, I think, goes a long way. And I heard recently about a new PC product that they had coming out. That was the HP loves to be the World’s First and World’s Most.

Michelle Petrovic:

(laughs)

Penny Conway:

But tell me about this new product because I think it’s really one of the first PCs to have a really hard and fast sustainability message wrapped around it.

Michelle Petrovic:

So, it’s called the HP Dragonfly. And it’s part of their Elite line, which are the most secure, and all that. But what’s really interesting about it is it’s made out of, again, the ocean-bound plastics. So, the speaker box is made out of the ocean-bound plastics. But it’s also made out of magnesium. All the other Elite products, or, or at least, the notebooks are all made out of, a single block of milled aluminum, which some people, I mean, I know what that means, but I’m also a super tech nerd. But they’re all made out of a single block of aluminum.

In order for them to make dragonfly at under a kilogram, they found magnesium is stronger than aluminum, can be smaller, and is actually more sustainable than aluminum. So, while aluminum can be recycled, so can the magnesium in it, which is awesome.

Penny Conway:

So, tell us, like aluminum, I’m thinking an aluminum can.

Michelle Petrovic:

Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Penny Conway:

And same sort of environmental impact as a can of soda. So now, they’re using magnesium and that’s lighter and can be reused?

Michelle Petrovic:

Yeah. So, even current Elite book line, they can all be recycled as well. So just like a can of aluminum can be recycled. So can the magnesium. I don’t know too much detail on it. So, I don’t want to go too in the weeds. But magnesium is more sustainable than most of the other computer manufacturer to products out there.

Penny Conway:

So, you know, where would you guys rate, personally, where would you guys rate HP’s sustainability efforts against some of the other partners you’ve worked with in the past?

Jane Garrity:

I’d rate them as number one. For everything that they’re doing, that they’ve been doing, right? It’s like other companies are trying to catch up with them, with everything that they’ve been doing. I would rate them as number one.

Katie MacKenzie:

Yeah. I would say the same. I think HP is definitely one of the more innovative partners that I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. To see them being innovative in the sustainability space, it’s really unique. And it’s just a good go-to market.

Michelle Petrovic:

I would agree. I definitely think it’s number one. When you look at their printers and how they’re using those consumables and making them sustainable as well. And their notebooks and desktops and everything, it’s really refreshing to see a tech company of that magnitude being that sustainable.

Penny Conway:

I think the other interesting thing about what they’re doing is they’re taking the sustainability message and wrapping it into their marketing and how they’re dealing with partners and dealing with customers. It’s not just an overarching value mission that we care about this. They’re actually putting it into practice throughout their entire chain of business. So, what can our customers start to expect to see maybe from Connection to help relay that HP message?

Katie MacKenzie:

I think when you look at buying a personal system for example, when you’re looking at the, the pros and cons, you can put two computers next to each other, and they look exactly the same. But what may set HP apart over the edge is really that they’re trying to increase the air quality, they’re trying to find things that are bad for the environment and reduce the waste overall. So, I think at the end of the day, when you’re looking at two different products, and you want to find the better one even though they look exactly the same, you may find that HP is the one the way to go because it’s something that’s going to help you. It’s going to help the environment overall.

Penny Conway:

And just like replacing plastic straws and your cups by purchasing, maybe choosing that manufacturer that has that built into their mission and part of their product manufacturing, that then extends to a company that’s also trying to do the same thing. So, just like people are purchasing making sure that the food they buy is sustainable and the paper goods they buy are sustainable, they can now start doing that with their actual technology equipment, which is something I don’t think really people thought would be possible at any point.

Jane Garrity:

Mm-hmm (affirmative). Yeah. When they, when they’re innovative and they reinvent and they’re reinventing all the time. (laughs)

Michelle Petrovic:

The other thing that I find really, really interesting is that the life cycle on these devices is pretty long. I mean, you want your employees to have a computer for at least three years, especially, if they’re on a device as a service contract. You can get that kind of refresh, always make sure you have the most sustainable products. But the battery life is guaranteed for 1,000 cycles. So, that’s from fully charged, all the way to fully dead and back. And that will usually last the user a little bit longer than three years. So they don’t… They won’t have issues with that battery dying too early, so they’ll have to replace the device. You can hold on to it a little bit longer.

Penny Conway:

So, if you are a company out there that is actively trying to build your corporate responsibility and sustainability message, contact our team here at Connection, our HP team to learn how HP’s technology products, from PCs, all the way to supplies, can help reinforce that message. Contact your account manager, find us at www.connection.com. And if you listened and wondered how you might get one of those recycling labels inside the box, if you can’t find it, visit hp.com/recycle, and we can get you a sticky, little label to send back your supplies.

Thank you so much for joining us guys.

Katie MacKenzie:

Thank you.

Jane Garrity:

Thank you.

Michelle Petrovic:

Thank you.

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