Get a quick start on sustainability with digital

  • Posted on May 17, 2022
  • Estimated reading time 3 minutes
Intro: Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability

Sustainability has rocketed to the top of the priority lists of CEOs in response to the demands of customers, employees, investors and regulators. Yet, beyond making a positive environmental impact to meet stakeholder expectations, leaders are coming to realize that sustainability transformation is essential to drive operational efficiencies and future revenue growth. According to Gartner research, sustainability transformation is now a strategic ambition for more than half of organizations.

The challenge for organizations is how to get started and keep moving forward on sustainability.

Smarter sustainability actions depend on digital, so the common data model and reporting capabilities of the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability and Sustainability Manager are significant. Nonetheless, it remains a daunting task for leaders to help their organizations take control of data to account for emissions, and to bring together people, business and technology to innovate safer and more sustainable business models. Many are overwhelmed and stuck in a state of paralysis.

At Avanade, we encourage clients to approach sustainability like digital transformation: focus on continually evolving, not just the end goal.

Through continual change, it’s important to use data and digital to take practical actions that make an impact within weeks, rather than fixating on an endpoint several years away. It’s of course important to be guided by a clear ‘North Star’, such as corporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals. However, organizations need to build the muscle to repeatedly use data and digital to rapidly ideate, prioritize and iterate sustainability innovation initiatives.

Avanade has developed two services to enable organizations to drive value from the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability and their existing investments in digital technologies. These services will help organizations get started on the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability and embrace an innovation-led approach to achieve sustainability outcomes within weeks.

  • Avanade Sustainability Technology Accelerator: Leveraging Avanade’s rich cloud and data technology expertise, this service will allow organizations to integrate existing data sources and start using the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability to report to stakeholders in as little as a month.
  • Avanade Sustainability Quick-Start: This service enables organizations to bring together their people, business and technology to rapidly prioritize practical actions and test and scale new innovations based on insights generated from the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability and other digital platforms.

As part of our holistic digital approach to sustainability, we also partner with clients to address an often-overlooked cause of carbon emissions: software.

With hardware costs plummeting and bandwidth growing, software has become bloated and inefficient, resulting in excessive electricity use and carbon impacts. At Avanade, we help organizations use green software principles to mitigate these impacts in three ways: reducing the amount of electricity required to run software; optimizing the physical resources used by software; and balancing software usage by time or region to leverage clean, renewable or low-carbon sources of electricity. Research by Avanade and our partners indicates that embracing green software principles in one division of a large enterprise alone could be the equivalent of keeping 26,000 fossil-fueled cars off the road for one year.

Avanade services and capabilities enable clients to take advantage of digital to meaningfully contribute to the sustainability of the planet and people, but also reduce operating costs, innovate new business models and improve brand reputation.

“Our driving purpose at Wood is to unlock solutions to the world’s most critical challenges and climate change certainly fits that description. We share Avanade’s commitment to bringing together digital technologies and diversity of thought to innovate new ways to address this challenge. Their deep digital expertise will help leaders take advantage of the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability to prioritize climate-positive actions and progress their sustainability journeys transparently and ethically.”

Ann Rosenberg
Senior VP for Sustainability Solutions, Wood plc

“Microsoft believes that just like every company currently has a financial system of record that sits at the core of their organization, there needs to be a sustainability system of record. Avanade’s new services for the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability will help organizations use technology to run the execution of their sustainability commitments and reduce emissions faster.”

Elisabeth Brinton
Corporate VP for Sustainability, Microsoft

As a global Microsoft sustainability partner and steering committee member of the Green Software Foundation, Avanade brings specialist expertise to help organizations use digital to accelerate ESG goals with the Microsoft Cloud for Sustainability.

Learn more on how, through the power of Microsoft and our people, Avanade helps clients use data to report emissions reductions and digital technologies to turn ambitious sustainability goals into practical actions. 

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