This will be a four-part series on developing trends and opportunities in Sustainability. Keep up with the upcoming blogs every week!
Many new graduates and young professionals are attracted to careers in sustainability. You have fresh ideas, ample energy and a social awareness. Likewise, many established professionals are drawn to sustainability because you’ve become disenchanted with how many corporations and governments disregard obvious societal needs.
Access to resources, human rights, clean environment, educational opportunities, community spirit – these are just a few of the ambitions emerging sustainability professionals want for themselves and their families.
Part One: Trends
So, what are the sustainability employment trends? The good news is that nearly every publicly traded company, national and state governments and thousands of NGOs employ sustainability professionals. Even better, the demand is increasing.
Suppliers have demands which require sustainability expertise. As we become an increasingly globalized business community, companies have sustainability criteria they impose on suppliers, and clients have sustainability criteria imposed on the companies. This is certainly true among large multinational corporations and is reaching down into SMEs (small medium enterprises). Learn how to track down metrics to answer supply chain surveys, and you’ll have an edge over others looking for similar jobs. A flexible option is the suite of online courses offered by the Sustainability Academy.
Companies are increasingly seeking certifications like the ones offered by CSE. They can cover general sustainability topics such as CSE’s Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Program or highly specific topics such as an Online Certificate on Carbon Reduction Strategy. Don’t settle for just one certification as sustainability is a growing and ever-changing field. Employers seek specific skill sets which culminate in a full body of knowledge.
Career sustainability professionals must understand the UN Sustainable Development Goals. By the end of 2019, every sustainability professional will be expected to implement SDGs for their employers. Companies are adding SDGs to their mission statements and projects so quickly that the SDGs will be as mainstream to sustainability reporting as revenue is to an annual report.
Sustainability practitioners are not limited to sustainability departments. They will be found in and demanded by departments throughout an organization to strengthen organizational culture around sustainability. Marketing, Finance, ERM (risk management), Communications, HR – cross-organizational departments will want a sustainability expert among their ranks, answering questions, leading programs and informing policy throughout the corporate structure.
These trends are resulting in growing sustainability departments. The lone employee tasked with completing a supply chain survey has turned into a cadre of personnel worthy of a C-suite leader.
More to follow on building your sustainability career next week. Part 2: Career Paths. Keep up with us!
CSE helps professionals advance their careers through certified on-site and group training services globally as well as the online Sustainability Academy. CSE is a recognized global leader in professional Sustainability training and coaching and one of the first to recognize the growing need for advanced certified education in the sustainability field. The Sustainability Academy is CSE’s global initiative to offer affordable, specialized, online education focused on Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility. Our goal is to train 100,000 professionals by 2020 and make an impact on our planet!