Are you worried about the oncoming green skills shortage?
Green jobs are booming in Britain right now.
According to research by PwC, the number of green jobs on the market in the UK has almost trebled in the last 12 months. This means that the market is growing at roughly four times the rate of the overall UK employment market.
But, according to business leaders across Britain, the skills needed to fill these essential roles are not keeping pace with demand. As a result, the green skills gap is widening, and a green skills shortage is starting to seem inevitable.
Thankfully, there are ways to stop this oncoming skills shortage from hitting your organisation too hard. Let’s look at four action points that have proved particularly impactful:
- Offering training and development opportunities.
- Investing in technology.
- Building a diverse workforce.
- Creating a positive company culture.
But first – what’s the reality of the situation?
The green skills shortage in reality
Green skills (or the knowledge, abilities, and competencies required to work in jobs related to sustainability) are increasingly important to businesses of all types. With the UK’s net zero target set for 2050, now is the time for British companies to start accelerating their sustainability initiatives.
But, according to a recent poll of British business leaders, 57% are struggling to find professionals with the green skillsets their companies need.
Meanwhile, more than a quarter (27%) of employed adults aspire to a green role, whether to positively impact the planet or future-proof their careers. But, without the right skills in, say, resource management or environmental monitoring, many face obstacles they don’t know how to overcome.
So, what can employers and managers do to upskill workers and plug growing gaps within their organisations?
Overcoming the green skills shortage
If you’re concerned about how the greens skills shortage might impact your business, give the following four steps a go:
1. Offer training and development opportunities
Consider what training and development opportunities you can offer your existing workforce, including:
- Investing in online or in-person courses for your employees.
- Introducing on-the-job training programmes.
- Inviting experts to deliver workshops and seminars.
In other words, provide your existing workforce with the opportunities they need to develop relevant green skills. It’s sure to pay off for your business as the skills gap continues to widen.
2. Invest in technology
Additionally, it’s a good idea to invest in up-to-date green technology. This might include, for example, automation and robotics, but will vary depending on the sector, specific job role, and task.
As well as maximising the efficiency of more manual green jobs, the right tech can also remove the need for manual labour in certain areas.
3. Build a diverse workforce
Another option is to reach out to underrepresented communities in your industry and provide opportunities for them to enter the green workforce.
For one thing, a diverse workforce will bring a wider variety of perspectives to the table, driving innovation. For another, it’s a great way to build a more sustainability-savvy workforce from the ground up.
Not sure where to start? Try partnering with community organisations, offering incentives, or creating targeted training programmes that improve accessibility to green jobs in your sector.
4. Create a positive company culture
On a related note, studies consistently show that employees who feel engaged and supported in their work are more likely to push themselves, innovate, and come up with new ideas.
That’s why, for any innovation initiative, it’s essential that employers and managers create a positive company culture.
This is especially true when it comes to encouraging employees to take part in sustainability efforts. Not only will the right culture encourage employees to step into new skills themselves, but it will also foster a culture that attracts workers who are passionate about the environment already.
Of course, creating a positive company culture is easier said than done. But, it’s a great long-term goal to have – and one that is sure to prove productive in a variety of areas.
Attract specialist sustainability talent with Aspion
Struggling to source and engage talent with specialist sustainability experience?
We can help… Aspion Search is a search and selection firm specialising in Transport & Logistics, Shipping, Sales, IT Sales, and Metals across multiple sectors throughout the UK and Europe.
We are experts in your industry, so we know what it takes to attract industry-leading talent with the skillsets, experience, and culture fit that you need.
If you’re on the lookout for talent with specialist sustainability experience, get in touch today!
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