Green roles increasing in almost one-quarter of UK businesses

17th October 2023


Almost one-quarter of UK companies are increasing the number of green roles within their business, new data from Totaljobs has revealed.

The recruitment platform’s Hiring Trends Index shows that 23% of businesses were increasing green roles in the last quarter, rising to 43% among large firms.

Job descriptions were also using sustainability-related phrases 80% more than average, with the most common being climate change, green, corporate social responsibility, sustainability, carbon footprint and carbon neutral.

Furthermore, the data shows that there has been an 677% increase in top sustainability roles since 2019, such as sustainability manager, engineer, or consultant.

Julius Probst, European labour market economist at Totaljobs, said that the prime minister’s recent announcements on net-zero targets and policy changes might impact upcoming business decisions.

"However, despite this, it's evident that the UK's low carbon and renewable energy sector will sustain its growth, making sustainability a pivotal aspect for attracting talent," he continued.

"Not only is there a wider societal and environmental need to go green, but it could help attract and retain talent as candidates become more aware of ESG importance.”

Indeed, research by Totaljobs found that 82% of employees want their employer to address climate change, with Millennials being significantly more eco-conscious than other generations – followed by Gen Z.

A significant 61% of 27-42 year-olds said that they would not apply for role at a company that produces products that are harmful to the environment, while 47% said they specifically look for opportunities with sustainable employers.

It would also appear that employees are becoming more vocal, with 36% of businesses stating that they have received feedback from staff when it comes to increasing efforts to address climate change.

However, 54% of job seekers reported difficulties learning about the sustainability of companies, and when it comes to green skills, just 17% of businesses currently offer training.

IEMA has recently launched its Green Careers Hub, providing businesses and individuals with all the information they need on green skills and potential career pathways.

The Institute has also spearheaded a campaign to include a commitment to green skills and training on the final cover text of the COP28 negotiations in the UAE later this year.

“This would give a clear signal to the planet’s businesses and industrial sectors that policymakers recognise that training and skills delivered at pace, will underpin the green revolution that results in the sustainable movement of goods and services globally,” said IEMA CEO, Sarah Mukherjee MBE.

“This shift simply will not happen quickly enough unless we equip the global workforce with the skills and training necessary for it to happen.”

Image credit: Shutterstock

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