Madrid, 10 September 2019: The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) has issued a leadership statement on the Future of Work. Endorsed by top executives from Ayala, Banco Santander, Charoen Pokphand Group, Firmenich, Fujitsu, Microsoft, Nestlé, PWC, and Randstad, the statement invites business leaders to shape a sustainable future of work through people-centered solutions.
The statement highlights the urgency of addressing the Future of Work today, as the combination of rapid technological evolution, socio-economic polarization and disillusionment of the workforce could lead to jobless growth, income inequality and social instability at a global scale.
It acknowledges that while everyone is talking about how to best prepare for the future of work, “we want to give business the power to create it. With society and technology changing faster than ever before, we need to ensure a future where business and society don’t just adapt but thrive. A future with inclusive workforces that are secure, motivated, skilled and prepared for any challenge that comes next. Where people’s lives are enriched by advancing technology. And where society is empowered and can prosper from equal access to new opportunities.”
Furthermore, the statement underscores that “if business is to work in the future, we need to shape the future of work. But the business community cannot achieve this in isolation. We invite governments, educational institutions and civil society to work with us to create a future where people, business and society thrive.”
The following business leaders endorsed the statement, and invite others to join them:
- Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala, Chairman and CEO, Ayala Corporation
- Ana Botín, Executive Chairman, Banco Santander
- Suphachai Chearavanont, CEO, Charoen Pokphand Group
- Gilbert Ghostine, CEO, Firmenich
- Masami Yamamoto, Director Senior Advisor, Fujitsu
- Toni Townes-Whitley, President, US Regulated Industries, Microsoft
- Magdi Batato, Executive Vice President, Head of Operations, Nestlé
- Robert Swaak, Global Relationship Partner, PwC Netherlands
- Jacques van den Broek, CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board, Randstad
- Peter Bakker, President and CEO, WBCSD
To translate this leadership vision into action, over the past year these companies have worked with other WBCSD members to define a responsible business agenda for the future of work. Together, they have identified a suite of business solutions to build responsible foundations of fair and meaningful work, as well as tools, strategies and business models that transform workforces, workplaces and social security in positive ways.
The leadership statement is being launched today during a CEO Roundtable hosted by Banco Santander at its headquarters in Madrid and attended by a dozen CEOs based in Spain and Portugal.
Peter Bakker, President and CEO of WBCSD: “Work is the engine at the center of our economies. It lies at the heart of WBCSD’s Vision 2050 where 9 billion people live well, within the limits of the planet, and is essential for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. For business to work in the future, we need to put people at the heart of work.”
As a next step WBCSD, with these companies in the lead, is defining principles and guidelines for the responsible implementation of new technology that impacts upon the workforce.
- Future of Work Leadership Statement
- Case study collection showcasing 19 examples from WBCSD member companies addressing future of work challenges in innovative ways
- Future of Work hub, which includes information on how to engage in WBCSD’s Project focused on this topic
- Kitrhona Cerri, Director, Social Impact