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How to drive your trusted future – insights from Fujitsu Forum 2019

As technology has rapidly developed in recent years, our trust in it has also evolved. At Fujitsu Forum at the beginning of November, we explored the difficulties this creates for public and private sector organisations around the world.

Because while every institution faces unique challenges and opportunities, it’s clear that trust – from stakeholders, partners, employees and of course employees – is absolutely critical.

That’s why driving a trusted future was the theme of this year’s Fujitsu Forum as we came together to identify the steps that organisations can take to foster the trust – and the future – that we need.

Here are our top five take-aways to help drive a trusted future.

Set out your vision to navigate complex times

It has become vital for every organisation to develop a strong vision to navigate through uncertainty – and deliver a sense of direction for everyone from partners to customers.

At Fujitsu, we’re driven by our vision: to use human-centric technology to change society – by being a digital transformation partner to organizations around the world.

A strong vision will enable organisations to navigate turbulent times – and make it clear to every stakeholder why you do what you do.

Perhaps for that reason, three-quarters of the people that we surveyed say they’re more likely to trust organisations that set out a clear vision.

Drive innovation by taking new approaches to new problems

Every organisation will need to innovate to be ready for the future. But digital transformation is about much more than new technology: it’s changing the way you operate.

That’s the same whether you’re talking about a business problem – or a global problem.

Co-creation is becoming key to innovation, as three-quarters of organisations develop products and services in collaboration with customers. Together, we can find new approaches to the problems of today – and create a brighter future.

Act with agility to keep up with change

Our guests at Fujitsu Forum were clear about the need for change, and it’s encouraging to hear that 67% of organisations worldwide are undergoing transformation.

In today’s climate, new challenges are emerging all the time – and for change to be successful it has to happen fast. But with the right approach and partners, you can tackle even huge problems, fast.

A great example is the sustainable cities “hackathon” described in one of the Fujitsu Forum breakout sessions.

A group of Fujitsu Distinguished Engineers came together to tackle the challenge of making cities safe, resilient and sustainable, which is one of the UN’s sustainable development goals.

The teams were given seven hours, insight on sustainability from experts and the chance to collaborate with people they don’t usually work with, all using a human-centric design experience.

At the end of the day, there were 27 new concepts, ranging from using technology to create sustainable behavioural change to reducing emissions through Transport-as-a-Service.

With the right approach, we can create change quickly, and ensure that innovation is a sustainable process.

Cultivate ecosystems to create a network of trust

The rising importance of ecosystems has been another major development in the last few years. That’s because today the challenges we face are too complex for any one company to tackle alone.

Ecosystems give us the opportunity to benefit from the unique characteristics of multiple companies – and create meaningful answers to difficult questions.

At Fujitsu, we’ve always worked closely with our technology partners. One of our keynote sessions explored what it takes to build a trusted ecosystem, with contributions from Nutanix, Intel, Microsoft and NetApp.

By building an ‘empathetic culture’ within your ecosystem through transparency, you can begin to build digital agendas that benefit all of you.

If you are part of a strong ecosystem, you’re more likely to have the answers to your customers’ questions – and have proved yourself to be worthy of their trust. Perhaps for that reason, 63% of people are more likely to trust an organisation with an ecosystem.

Become truly human-centric

Both public and private sector organisations are now thinking more carefully about their role in society. It’s something that matters to customers; 67% of people trust an organisation that makes a positive social impact.

But that can’t be a CSR exercise: it’s about organisations understanding their role in society and the need to make a positive contribution to the world around them.

Of course, that includes considering how technology is used and its impact on people.

This was something discussed at length during our breakout session on artificial intelligence and ethics. The session explored the ways that we would – and would not – be prepared to use AI, from self-driving cars to medical decisions and even robotic managers at work.

Our panel concluded that it’s not just how new technology is used, but how it’s created. Coders and data scientists should be trained in ethics first, so they’re thinking about the implications of what they’re creating from the start. This will encourage more of a move towards explainable AI.

As we develop and use technology, we must remember that everything is about people. People should define their challenges, and then technology should help to solve them. This human-centric approach will deliver a bright future – and it’s something we believe in passionately at Fujitsu.

Delivering a trusted future

You can’t accomplish anything without trust, from your partners, stakeholders, employees and customers.

But trust has to be earned – and organisations should take active steps to show their worthiness.

Fujitsu Forum gave us many inspiring examples of how organisations are driving a trusted future. But it’s a conversation that’s just beginning.

To learn more about the outcomes of this year’s Fujitsu Forum, please visit: https://www.fujitsu.com/global/microsite/forum-2019/ or visit our Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram pages, using the social handle @Fujitsu_NI.