he mobility of the future is carbon neutral and electric. This is something that INFORM is sure of. The company has consequently just installed 75 wallboxes for its buildings on Pascalstraße. These enable employees to charge their electric vehicles for free. The electricity for the charging points is supplied by a photovoltaic system, which has also just been installed. The goal is to reduce the carbon footprint. The software manufacturer INFORM also wants to promote e-mobility and therefore took part in the city of Aachen’s mobility test weeks in September.
“In launching this large-scale project, we want to play our part in helping achieve the city of Aachen’s goal of carbon neutrality by 2030,” says Managing Director Dr. Andreas Meyer. “As the largest IT employer in the Aachen region, we believe that we have a particular responsibility when it comes to sustainability and climate neutrality.” The employees have been able to use the 75 wallboxes since the start of September. These are installed in the underground car parks of four company buildings on Pascalstraße. “According to the Aachen city administration department responsible for mobility and transport concepts, this is one of the largest infrastructure projects for e-mobility to have been independently implemented by a company from the Aachen region,” adds Meyer. The wallboxes are available for use by all INFORM employees. “Everyone can and should charge their electric vehicle here for free, regardless of whether a company or a private one.” The company has also just set up 27 charging stations for e‑bikes and is again generating the electricity for the charging stations itself. To this end, a photovoltaic system was installed on two of the five buildings owned by INFORM in parallel to the charging points. “This system is made up of 230 panels and generates 116,000 kilowatt hours of green electricity every year. That’s enough to cover ten percent of our total electricity requirements and enables us to save over 70 tons of CO2 every year compared to conventional electricity. But INFORM no longer uses any conventional electricity at all. Instead, we now use green electricity in all of our buildings, meaning we are already carbon neutral in terms of electricity!”
Increasing awareness of electromobility
To increase employee awareness of electromobility and test the new infrastructure, INFORM took part in the city of Aachen’s mobility test weeks in September. “This enabled our employees to test electric cars from E.GO and several e-bike models free of charge. Many of our colleagues took up this opportunity and we have noticed that our employees have a strong focus on environmentally friendly mobility.
In view of the above, Meyer sees the recently installed infrastructure as only the first step. The necessary conditions have now been created at INFORM to completely stop using vehicles with combustion engines in the future. “If we want to achieve carbon neutrality in the region, when it comes to mobility, there is no way to avoid the use of hybrid or electric vehicles. We firmly believe in this and intend to migrate our fleet of company cars to electric vehicles over the next few years,” states Meyer. At present, the company already has about 70 plug-in hybrid or electric vehicles. “These make up about 40 percent of our entire fleet of company vehicles.” The remainder of the fleet should be electrically powered by 2028. “Unfortunately, we cannot do this any quicker as manufacturers are currently experiencing major supply difficulties, which are resulting in lead times of up to a year for a new electric car.”
Sustainability shapes our operations as a company
Sustainability has always been a top priority for INFORM. “We regard sustainability as the basic prerequisite for our ability to operate as a company,” explains Meyer. “The greatest potential – from a global perspective – came and still comes from the development of our software products. These enable our customers around the world to achieve their self-imposed sustainability targets, which are often based on the UN sustainable development goals.” One of the uses of INFORM software is to organize numerous logistics processes. “In the case of transport processes, every kilometer not traveled saves CO2. Our software can calculate the most climate-friendly truck routes.” The software solutions also help combat financial crime, increase the wellbeing and satisfaction of shift workers, improve personnel-related efficiency, and reduce waste from purchasing and production processes.
In addition to the above, the company also believes it has a certain responsibility on a regional level. “If we are helping our customers reduce their carbon footprint, we naturally also want to do the same ourselves so that we can play our part in achieving climate neutrality in the Aachen region,” states Meyer. In addition to its own infrastructure for electromobility, the company has also been committed to the use of green electricity and geothermal energy for heating its buildings for many years. “However, sustainability is about more than just climate protection for us. We also believe in our internal responsibilities toward our employees. In this regard, we do a great deal to create and maintain a working environment characterized by appreciation and respect,” states Meyer. This includes flexible full-time and part-time positions, mobile working, a company childcare facility, numerous continuing professional development opportunities, and an extensive employee health scheme.