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Cisco Releases Tenth Annual CSR Report

I am pleased to announce that Cisco has released its tenth annual Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Report. The 2014 Cisco CSR Report outlines our strategy to use our expertise, technology, and partnerships for social, environmental, and business impact.

Each day, people around the world face many challenges: access to quality education, unemployment, poverty, and climate change, to name a few. We’ve learned that when we bring people together, they find innovative solutions to address these problems. And when you add technology to the mix, we can multiply our impact and uncover even greater opportunities.

For example, in France, a team of Cisco Networking Academy students used the connections between people, process, data, and things to create a networked walking stick for the blind. Watch this video to learn more:

Our CSR Report contains many more examples like this, organized according to five pillars:

  1. Governance and Ethics: Promoting responsible business practices at every level—with employees, suppliers, distributors, and partners
  2. Supply Chain: Working closely with our 600 global suppliers to maintain our high standards for ethics, labor rights, health, safety, and the environment
  3. Our People: Attracting, retaining, and developing talented people through an inspiring workplace, engaged management, and flexibility
  4. Society: Combining technology and human creativity to solve social issues and help communities thrive.
  5. Environment: Creating new business value for our customers using sustainable Cisco technologies, products, and solutions

Here are just a few highlights from our 2014 CSR Report:

  • We updated our Human Rights Roadmap to align with the United Nations (UN) Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and we launched an online human rights training program for our employees.
  • 58% of our key suppliers set goals to cut their greenhouse gas emissions — up from 45% in 2013.
  • We ranked number 55 on the Fortune “100 Best Companies to Work For” list.
  • We made $275 million in cash and in-kind contributions to community organizations worldwide; and our employees volunteered 136,000 hours to support organizations in their own communities.
  • Employee-led “Pack It Green” projects saved approximately 888 metric tonne of packaging material and are expected to save over $6 million annually through material and freight cost reductions.
  • 97% of Networking Academy students who participate in a selective internship program with local IT companies in Italy get jobs; the partnership is creating a pipeline of tech talent while combatting a youth unemployment rate over 40%.

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Summary: Midsize Auctioneer’s Network is Fast and Fortified

IDC’s SMB Survey comparing IT spending priorities in 2012 and 2013 concluded that the top three requirements for the network are performance, security and capacity. 

MM IDC

How is designing a network different for a giant auctioneer different from other mid-sized enterprises?

Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers is the world’s largest auctioneer of heavy equipment and trucks. They sell billions of dollars of unused and used equipment at hundreds of unreserved public auctions each year. What’s even more impressive is that they are able to do this with only 1300 employees worldwide. Read the full blog here Read More »

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The Value of a Trained & Certified Employee

We recently commissioned a research initiative to explore the value of certifications in the workplace and to better understand the ways that Cisco training aids employers and employees. The study, which was conducted by an independent research firm, was designed to measure employer perceptions of highly valued individuals in their organizations.

The study focused on both employee performance as well as company performance metrics. Employees who were Cisco certified were found to have increased speed and effectiveness in completing network-related IT projects, resolving technical problems and an ability to come up to speed rapidly during onboarding. When employers were asked to quantify the impact a Cisco certified professional had on the company, results showed a decrease in network support costs and downtime as well as the ability to increase project load and customer satisfaction.

Key findings from the study include:

  • Seventy-eight percent of network managers in the survey rated their Cisco certified staff as coming up to speed more than 20 percent faster.
  • More than half of the networking managers in the survey rated external customer satisfaction as being 30 percent or better as a result of Cisco certified staff.
  • Network managers in the survey believed that Cisco certified employees reduce network downtime by as much as 37 percent on average.

The research demonstrates that employers place significant value on Cisco certifications and training, with almost three-quarters agreeing that their Cisco certified employees are more knowledgeable and more valuable than their noncertified employees. The study validates what we knew all along: certifications deliver value with a wide variety of benefits for both employers and employees.

Find the full white paper here: http://www.cisco.com/go/hire

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Cisco Named to Working Mother 100 Best Companies List

As a working mom of two of the best and brightest kids (no bias here!) I couldn’t be prouder that Cisco again made the Working Mother 100 Best Companies list.  When you think about it though, “Mother” is a bit of a misnomer here. Really most Cisco employees, about 99 percent in fact, benefit from the flexible work practices that have become the hallmark of our corporate culture and one of the things that makes Cisco such a great place to work.

Progressive, flexible work policies are table stakes, but lets not forget about the technology that has made it all possible. I remember back in the day, I was working late one night at home when my dial up (yes, dial up) malfunctioned. I had to hop in the car close to midnight and drive to the Cisco office just to log onto the corporate network and send an email. Today, thanks to the power of the network (do I sound like a commercial?) I can work from anywhere, at anytime and be productive.

While flexibility is key, it’s not the only thing that Working Mother highlights as a characteristic of a “Best Company.”   Check out the complete story for more details.

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The Role of Executives in Employee Engagement: Crossing Your T’s and Dotting Your I’s

August 21, 2013 at 11:58 am PST

In our #ciscosmt Twitter chat yesterday, we talked about how to engage employees in social media. On a very high level, I presented the pillars of our program: identify, activate, recognize and measure. And previously, I blogged about a potential framework you can use for your own Social Ambassador program (that’s what we call our employee engagement program at Cisco).

At the end of the session, I offered 3 key takeaways for companies interested in starting or improving their employee engagement programs (these are all Twitter-friendly nuggets): Read More »

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