Implementing change: Leveraging data for sustainable business

By Bhushan Patil, Chief Growth Officer for Network Services for APJI & EMEA,

Sustainability narrative for businesses is often dominated by need to go beyond just Tokenism and measuring real costs of implementing green solutions to make them viable and profitable strategy. While the economic recovery is still uncertain, incorporating sustainability can indeed be daunting. The challenge for businesses is to acknowledge that sustainability is no longer an option but it is an imperative.

In 2020, we witnessed businesses across all sectors accelerate their digital transformation, but how many of those successfully managed to create a sustainable digital enterprise? This is a question that still needs to be answered in order to determine the on-ground reality.

Sustainability must be embedded at the core of every business. Corporations that have implemented sustainable initiatives have found that it has improved business resilience, led to better operational performance and contributed to commercial success. As businesses become Digital, they generate a lot of very useful data. Business leaders must take advantage of this wealth of data at hand to create more sustainable solutions throughout the supply chain.

Analysing data for sustainable results

COVID-19 accelerated digitalisation across all aspects of everyday life, and this has created a significant opportunity for businesses to re-evaluate how they can apply technologies in more innovative and meaningful ways. Ability to capture Relevant datapoint and analyse it to drive multiple use cases is critical benefit of Digitalisation.

Research has found that 95% of businesses worldwide reported the need to manage unstructured data as a problem for their business in 2021, and 97% of those organisations are investing in big data and AI as a result. By leveraging AI, enterprises can analyse the wealth of data produced everyday to drive more sustainable and profitable outcomes. Implementing AI can help to deliver real-time insights when estimating waste and materials for products - by 2030, the potential added value unlocked by AI can reach up to $127 billion per year.

Corporations leading the way in sustainable transformation are now sharing information to drive sustainability through AVEVA's concept of the Connected Industrial Economy. Examples of this can be seen through data-led network links such as the Business Ambition for 1.5°C coalition. The coalition encourages collaboration within engineering, operations, supply chain, and employees across a number of businesses. It uses the cloud for data storage and AI for analysis to optimise ‘Performance Intelligence’. In connecting all aspects of the value chain, business leaders can access actionable insights that will enable positive results. Businesses can even grow these connected networks to suppliers and partners to drive sustainability across the supply chain.

Optimising supply chains with green solutions

Supply chain optimisation can help to significantly reduce carbon emissions across all sectors. We live in a tech reliant era that enables us to always remain connected with people, systems and businesses. As a result, enterprises can leverage data-sharing and tracking platforms for real-time visibility and accountability to reduce environmental impacts before they are magnified. In fact, according to the World Economic Forum, eight global supply-chain inefficiencies account for more than 50% of all carbon emissions, with food alone representing about 25%.

What’s more, 80% to 90% of greenhouse-gas emissions from products are considered “Scope 3”, according to the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. “Scope 3” emissions are indirect emissions across the company’s value chain, such as embedded emissions in purchased goods and services, employee travel, and the end-of-life treatment of sold products. The ability to have visibility across the entire value chain, from employee commutes to product distribution, equips businesses to implement effective, data-driven, sustainable change throughout an organisation.

Leading the way to a green future

Consumers are increasingly looking to buy from companies that show genuine focus on sustainability issues and the same can be said for employees, stakeholders and partners. As organisations across the globe look to digital transformation as a means of driving revenue and success in years to come, they must consider using technology to build a more sustainable business model.

It’s critical that every business takes responsibility to make the strides needed to achieve positive change. The time is now to capitalise on this opportunity and bring sustainability efforts to life.

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