Ford Motor rolls out PC power management

The program's power settings on Windows laptops and desktop computers are centrally controlled to re

The program is being rolled out to Ford computer users across the US this month. It will be migrated to Ford operations around the world later in the year.

Ford developed its PC Power Management system with NightWatchman software from 1E, whose research found that almost half of all employees who use computers at work typically do not power them down at the end of the working day. In the US alone, over $2.8bn of PC power is being wasted every year, according to 1E.

The company said that the system ensures all computers connected to the Ford intranet are awake and able to receive software deliveries during off hours, decreasing downtime during working hours due to software loads.

The savings to the company on power cost alone is expected to top $1.2m annually when the system is fully implemented. By reducing PC power consumption, Ford also stands to reduce its carbon footprint by an estimated 16,000 to 25,000 metric tons annually.

The cost savings and reduced carbon footprint are obtained by developing 'Power Profiles' for each PC in the company. With its power profile enabled, each PC monitors its usage patterns and determines when it can be turned off. If the user is working late, he or she will be alerted of the approaching power down and given the opportunity to delay it, according to the company.

In addition, the PC is able to detect when a Microsoft Office product is active and is able to save open documents before shutting down in case the user is not present.