Dell surpassed Johnson & Johnson by a mere 0.1 on a 100-point scale in the 2011 Newsweek Rankings of America’s Greenest Companies, edging my company out of the top 5. It is probably in part because of efforts like the Reconnect Program in partnership with Goodwill, to refurbish and recycle computers and other electronics, that helped them in the Newsweek rankings.
I recently had the opportunity to use the Reconnect Program while back in Cincinnati for Christmas. Amy and I rented a car for our trip and since we had use of a car, always a novelty for us, we decided it was a great opportunity to go through our closets and gather up our donations, add them to the trunk, and drop them off while we were in Cincinnati, which has a number of convenient Goodwill Reconnect locations.
Our electronic donations included three cable modems, after Comcast successfully convinced me that my intermittent Skype issues were related to my out-of-date modem and not the speed of my connection. The drop off process at the Goodwill located at 10600 Springfield Pike, Cincinnati, OH 45215, was extremely convenient, with a manned pull-up drop off point and clear Dell Reconnect signs. After taking our donations and providing a receipt, we were in and out in less than 5 minutes and all for free. Other electronic recycling programs can carry a small fee, but the partnership with Goodwill is brilliant in a number of ways:
- Goodwill has the infrastructure to handle direct consumer collections, refurbishment and resale,
- Goodwill has a large footprint with more than 2,600 locations nationwide, while Dell is largely an online retailer, and
- The Reconnect program has created a significant impact by recycling more than 230 million pounds of end-of-life computer equipment since its inception in 2004.
We need more efforts to create these strategic partnerships across industries to solve problems for consumers, like how to easily recycle electronics at the end of life.
 As a quick note, Comcast was right; my Skype calls are much more clear now with a new modem: the Motorola SB6121 SURFboard DOCSIS 3.0 Cable Modem– $83.49 at Amazon.com