Four keys to successful sustainability transformation, from Fujitsu’s global survey

Identifying the status of sustainability transformation by industry and the outlook for technology implementation between 2025 and 2030
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Posted by Janet B. Stroud — August 14, 2023 — Digital services provider Fujitsu recently released the Fujitsu Future Insights Global Sustainability Transformation Survey Report 2023, highlighting the results of a survey of 1,800 executives and key decision makers in nine countries, with the aim of understanding the current status and global trends around sustainability transformation. Fujitsu defines “sustainability transformation” as transforming business to bring about positive change in our environment, society and economies. Examples include the reduction of energy usage and CO2 emissions through continuous monitoring and the reduction of waste by implementing end-to-end traceability.

In collaboration with Oxford Economics, this seventh survey explores the current status of sustainability transformation, including how digital transformation contributes to the achievement of sustainability goals. Based on the results, Fujitsu identified four key success factors for sustainability transformation, the status of digital-led sustainability transformation by industry, and the outlook for technology implementation between 2025 and 2030.

Fujitsu says the findings of this survey will help the company address the challenges of realizing a sustainable world with customers through Fujitsu Uvance, a solution designed to help customers grow their businesses and solve societal issues.

Fujitsu sustainability transformation

Image courtesy of Fujitsu

Sustainability brings business opportunities

Today, environmental and social sustainability challenges such as climate change and geopolitical tensions are interlinked and, in many cases, influence each other. The business impact of these challenges has become more apparent than ever, underlining the need for organizations to take immediate action. In collaboration with Oxford Economics, Fujitsu conducted this survey to clarify the state and the success factors for sustainability transformation.

Key findings

1. The state of sustainability transformation

The survey revealed that only 8% of organizations are true sustainability leaders, developing organizational capacity, implementing strategies, and delivering outcomes toward the realization of sustainability transformation. While many business leaders consider the transformation to an organization that delivers value to the environment and society as important, they believe that the complexity and enormity of the challenges involved make such transformation difficult to achieve. The survey findings revealed that many organizations have just started their full-fledged journey towards sustainability transformation.

Fujitsu sustainability transformation graphic

Graphic courtesy of Fujitsu. Click to enlarge.

2. The four key success factors for sustainability transformation

The survey analyzed the characteristics and initiatives common to sustainability leaders, identifying the following four key success factors for sustainability transformation:

  1. Driving leadership based on a sustainability-oriented purpose
  2. Fostering empathy with customers and employees, for example through developing skills and promoting diversity and inclusion
  3. Integrating sustainability into business
  4. Implementing the twin approach of digital and sustainability

For example, 89% of sustainability leaders develop, improve or exit new businesses based on their purpose. On the other hand, only 45% of non-leaders are engaged in purpose-driven business management.

3. Sustainability transformation accelerated by technology

The survey revealed that sustainability leaders are actively driving digital transformation and have high organizational capabilities in digital technology. For example, 84% of sustainability leaders have employees with the skills required for digital transformation and 79% of leaders use progressive methodologies like agile development. In addition, 78% are transforming their business processes using data and digital technologies.

The survey also confirmed that around 80% of sustainability leaders believe the five key dimensions of automation, experience, innovation, resilience and trust are crucial to digital-led sustainability transformation. It also explores the status of sustainability transformation in these five dimensions by industry, and the outlook for technology implementation between 2025 and 2030. For example, around two thirds of survey respondents already implement AI to automate tasks and improve employee productivity and experience, while 42% expect that more than half of all business tasks across their organization will be carried out through collaboration between people and AI by 2030.

Fujitsu’s commitment to sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

UN sustainable development goalsThe Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by the United Nations in 2015 represent a set of common goals to be achieved worldwide by 2030. Fujitsu’s purpose — “to make the world more sustainable by building trust in society through innovation” — is a promise to contribute to the vision of a better future empowered by the SDGs.

As a partner in sustainability transformation, Fujitsu says it will work with customers to solve environmental problems, improve people’s well-being, and transform business toward the realization of sustainable economic growth, with Fujitsu Uvance playing a central role in realizing a sustainable world.

As the digital transformation partner of choice for customers in over 100 countries, Fujitsu’s 124,000 employees work to resolve some of the greatest challenges facing humanity. The company’s range of services and solutions draw on five key technologies: Computing, Networks, AI, Data & Security, and Converging Technologies, which Fujitsu brings together to deliver sustainability transformation.

Survey overview

  1. Period: January 2023
  2. Countries surveyed: Australia, China, France, Germany, Japan, Singapore, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States
  3. Respondents: executives and key decision makers at organizations with 500 or more employees and sales of 10 billion yen or more in the previous fiscal year (one response per organization).
  4. Methodology: Anonymous online survey (number: 1,800) and interviews (number: 22)

Download the Fujitsu Future Insights Global Sustainability Transformation Survey Report 2023 and learn more about the Fujitsu Technology & Service Vision at Fujitsu.