South Lanarkshire Council has cut its annual energy costs by £40,000 after implementing power management software on its PCs.

The local authority has been using the system from Verismic Software on its 4,500 desktop and laptop computers for a year, and said that ROI was achieved in less than 12 months.

The computers are located across multiple office locations, but the software can be managed centrally via the corporate network.

"By centrally powering down PCs at 7pm each night, or 10pm for local leisure centres, and allowing users to power back up when they return to work in the morning, we are achieving savings of £40,000 per annum," said Janice Woodley, technology services manager at South Lanarkshire Council.

The energy savings are part of South Lanarkshire's Carbon Management Plan, which aims to reduce the council's carbon emissions.

The council's other IT-related energy-efficiency initiatives include server virtualisation, having implemented VMware over the last two years.

"Almost all of our Windows servers run on VMware and we don't have standalone servers," said Woodley.

She said that the council is also considering upgrading the Verismic Software to a newer version, as Woodley is particularly interested in the dynamic efficiency function of Power Manager 3.0. This feature would enable systems to 'throttle back' to reduce power consumption when users or applications are idle, and automatically 'throttle up' when required.