Last year, Cisco introduced Partnering for Purpose, where innovation and business goals with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives were highlighted to benefit partners and their customers. Cisco added a Partnering for Purpose Category in the sixth Annual Partner Innovation Challenge, and 88% of all partner entries for the Innovation Challenge were submitted in this Partnering for Purpose Category. It is inspiring to see this response from our global partner community.

Cisco’s 2023 Purpose Report

Annually, Cisco produces the Purpose Report showing our contributions toward environmental, social, governance (ESG), and corporate social responsibility efforts. Chuck Robbins, our CEO, sets the vision and business strategy goals to achieve amazing things for Cisco, our customers, and partners globally. You can read more about Chuck Robbins’ perspective and all the details from the 2023 Purpose Report and ESG Reporting Hub.

The 2023 Purpose Report can be an excellent resource for inspiring your practices to create positive ESG outcomes. But first, it takes a vision to see how to use ESG to expand your go-to-market strategy. As this year’s Innovation Challenge indicated, you are well on your way to engaging your customers.

Social Responsibility Actions

In the theme of an Inclusive Future for all, Cisco invested in 12 specific five-year actions to use the unique strengths of our people, technology, innovation, and partner ecosystem. One of these actions is diversifying our partner ecosystem by increasing the number of African American/Black (AA/B)-owned technology companies and growing opportunities to accelerate the financial growth of AA/B-owned partners. We are well on our way to this goal and have engaged with hundreds of partners in building strong technology practices to achieve sustained growth.

A Better Future with Sustainability

There has been huge momentum with sustainability. Cisco is fully engaged by offering partners the Environmental Sustainability Specialization, one of our fastest-growing specializations. Additionally, there is a Sustainability Partner Journey outlining how to operate a successful sustainability practice. Maybe the most important news is the recent announcement of the Sustainability Estimator, which provides partners insight into the estimated energy savings, emissions reduction, cost reduction, and environmental impact your customers can realize when modernizing their IT infrastructure.

The Talent Bridge

We know there is an ever-present need to locate people and grow their careers. To this end, Cisco created The Talent Bridge to connect Cisco, partners, and customers with qualified talent. We automate the connection between employers and job seekers at no cost through our Talent Bridge Matching Engine platform. We also have a tight alignment with the offerings and alums of Cisco’s Network Academy. Cisco Networking Academy helps teachers prepare students for in-demand tech careers like cybersecurity, networking, and programming. Free curriculum and learning tools are delivered through an online platform where learning and digital content are available for distance or hybrid learning.

I encourage everyone to access these resources to create an impact for our customers. As you can see, doing good is good for business.


Check out the Cisco 2023 Purpose Report

Learn more about Partnering for Purpose


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Jason W. Gallo

VP of Partner Go-to-Market Acceleration

Global Partner and Routes to Market Sales