Creating a Sustainable HR Function for the Future


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ERE Webinar from 4/29/2009, presented by Lizz Pellet.

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Creating a Sustainable HR Function for the Future

  1. 1. Creating a Sustainable HR Function •  Lizz Pellet, Fellow Johns Hopkins University and CEO of EMERGE International. •  Today's Agenda: •  Overview of sustainability and being green •  How to build and leverage your green image •  Three step process for creating a sustainable HR practice: Evaluate, Eliminate, Illuminate •  Core values alignment to sustainability programs •  Sustainability jobs and industries April 29, 2009 Webinar: Copyright EMERGE International
  2. 2. What does green mean? The discussions about green recruiting are springing up everywhere
  3. 3. Why is Green Important to your Recruiting Strategy and Overall HR Initiatives? The hype and the buzz is building 33% A Harris poll found that 33 percent of Americans would be more inclined to work for a green company compared to an organization that does not make a conscious effort to promote socially and environmentally friendly practices. 28% Jobfox survey found 28% out of 6,000 respondents would take environmentalism if free, but would not be willing to take a pay cut for it. 78% A Canadian survey was claiming that 78% of the respondents “given a choice would leave their current job in favor of a greener workplace.”
  4. 4. Gut Data – Our Intuition (and the Love of Google and Other “Cool Companies”) Tell Us… •  Going green is becoming a significant factor in the creation of an employment brand •  Organizations that are not implementing an environmental policy may be losing employees to their competitors •  Some sustainability incentives may be “sexy” to employees: >  Subsidies for hybrid cars >  On site farmers markets >  Green commuting vouchers >  Organic dry cleaning >  Reward and recognition program incentives are shifting >  Recycling efforts: water bottles, ink cartridges (yes, bring them in from home! We will recycle them here and donate the money to our community) anything that can be recycled!
  5. 5. Why is Green Important to Your Recruiting Strategy and Overall HR Initiatives? “While candidates of all generations have begun evaluating potential employers based on their “greenness” few in recruiting have leveraged this hot topic in recruitment communication and activities”. “Individual recruiters need to make their firm’s environment stance a critical element of their sales pitch to potential applicants and candidates” Dr. John Sullivan June, 2007
  6. 6. What is “Green” Recruiting? The reality is in the data 49%
  7. 7. What is “Green” Recruiting? 61%
  8. 8. What is “Green” Recruiting? 73%
  9. 9. Lots of Definitions Out There…. Employers committed to “Green Recruiting” recognize and embrace the broader issues of social responsibility, community involvement, environmental stewardship and sustainability of the environment and openly assess their results at all levels of the organization. They especially realize the importance of sharing their vision and actions with employees and candidates in order to attract, engage and influence the most talented candidates to come and stay. Gerry Crispin Chief Navigator, CareerXroads
  10. 10. Three Step Process for Creating a Sustainable HR Practice 1. Evaluate 2. Eliminate 3. Illuminate
  11. 11. Step 1: Evaluate - Perform a Diagnostic -  Are any of your products and/or services environmentally sustainable? -  Are there efforts to facilitate and engage employees broadly to examine operational processes and maximize environmental sustainability? -  Do you have any jobs whose responsibilities are to reduce you firm’s carbon footprint? - Do your job descriptions reflect your green commitment? -  Is your firm involved in outside (community) activities to compensate for lack of sustainability in products and services? -  Have you looked at your recruiting process to calculate its carbon footprint? -  Have you been turned down by qualified candidates because of environmental issue? LEED certified companies are KEY to being green. -  Have great employees left for quot;greenerquot; pastures? Where did they go? - Do your leaders know the score and are you communicating the message?
  12. 12. Data Talks – Green Washing Walks -  Compileall the information you can find about your company’s employment brand and your level of “greeness” before getting started. There may be initiatives underway that you are not aware of. -  Google search is where you may have to start to find best practice examples. From the home page click “google scholar” for an amazing amount of data that has already been collected and validated. -  Go to your competitors’ websites and see how green they are. -  Check out a green publication resources like: a magazine dedicated to being green at work!
  13. 13. Step 2: Eliminate – Get Rid of Redundancy and Deploy Business Process Reengineering to the HR Function •  Measurement and metrics •  Business process reengineering •  TQM, CQI or Six Sigma •  Process mapping •  Cost – Benefit analysis •  Green is not just for tree huggers any more: •  Is it all about making money? •  What about social responsibility? •  TWO VIEWS………. • v=iXsaYR1Izqw&feature=related • v=yQykGinvNrw&feature=related
  14. 14. We Need to Quantify Our Efforts So what’s a ton of paper – really? •  For every ton of paper made, there are 24 trees used, 40 thousand gallons of clean water is used during production, and among the by products of paper production are 5,690 lbs of greenhouse gasses and almost 20,000 gallons of waste water.* •  Are your recruiting materials printed on recycled paper? •  Have you implemented a copy paper (double side) printing policy? •  Do you have a message on the bottom of your emails – “please think before printing this email”? •  Do you claim to be a “carbon neutral” company? >
  15. 15. Virtually Everything May be Virtual Sooner Than We Think • gave me an example of a large healthcare organization that spent $1M on travel expenses for job interviews but only hired 15% of candidates that flew in. •  Essentially wasting $850K in related costs. If they had reduced their air travel process they could have saved a ton of money and captured the impact on the environment (carbon footprint) •  Video job interviewing may be the next trend. We know candidate selection is very relational based – so the question must be asked, can a camera and conversation replace face to face?
  16. 16. Step 3: Illuminate - Employment Branding and Green Messaging •  Employment branding is a way to differentiate yourself from your competition and to attract, retain and repel candidates. •  Being crystal clear about who you are from a cultural perspective can repel the candidates you know are not a good fit – significantly increasing the ROI of recruitment and retention efforts. •  Creating a green message can support retention efforts for employees who are themselves, becoming more socially conscious and will look for this values alignment in their work experience. •  No matter what message you create, if it is not authentic and congruent to your true organizational culture – employees may be attracted, but will not stick around very long once they are on boarded. •  The Economic Recovery Exodus……..
  17. 17. Today’s Employees Want Transparency •  Employees are looking for a meaningful, authentic and congruent work experience •  It is deeply rooted in U.S. culture to talk about our “jobs” •  Cultural fit is paramount in finding a job you love •  Yahoo! employee who kept a twitter log the day he was fired and walked his Twitter community through the entire event. Lucky for Yahoo! it was not a horrific experience. •  Potential employees are twittering about their job interviews, the people who are interviewing them and how they are being treated. Potential PR nightmare or outstanding exposure opportunity.
  18. 18. Employment Brand Examples Timberland: The Mission >  Our mission is to equip people to make a difference in their world. We do this by creating outstanding products and by trying to make a difference in the communities where we live and work. We’re a big company made up of a lot of small parts and incredibly talented people. We make boots, shore, clothes and gear that are comfortable enough to wear all day and rugged enough for all year. We don’t rest on our accomplishments. If we did, we’d only have ever made one waterproof leather boot. Our place in this world is bigger than the things we put in it. So we volunteer in our communities. Making new products goes hand in hand with making things better. That means reducing our carbon footprint and being as environmentally responsible as we can.
  19. 19. Employment Brand Examples Whole Foods: They give us “whole people” – and “whole planet” on their site. “We believe companies, like individuals, must assume their share of responsibilities as tenants of Planet Earth”. Proctor and Gamble: One of the best career web sites that evokes a sense of community, brand awareness, imagination, creativity and socially responsibility through animation, imagery and music. Starbucks: Living our values – Starbucks commitment to Social Responsibility. Developed a six panel brochure that outlines their values and how the values are woven into their mission statement and guiding principles.
  20. 20. Poll Time: Question 1 •  Does your company have an environmental policy?
  21. 21. Poll Time: Question 2 •  Does your company recycle?
  22. 22. Leveraging Your Green Image to Attract and Retain Top Talent •  If your company recycles, you have an environmental policy, you just might not be advertising it! This is what creating an employment brand that leverages going green is all about. •  If your company participates in any community activity that is focused on sustainability or environmental pursuits, you may not be leveraging this in your messaging. •  You may want to conduct a “brand scan” to gather all the data and activity that is currently taking place so you can create the story. You may need a “story teller” to complete this activity.
  23. 23. Brand and Promote Green Recruiting to “Attract” •  Liberty Mutual spent $40 million on a new consumer and employment branding campaign and is now known as “the responsibility company”: •  Companies are searching social networking sites to find candidates. While Youtube and Myspace work, try some of the niche sites like They know who you are! •  We can not talk about the creation of a green HR function without looking at our views, values, protocol or policies on social networking. •  Recent search of LinkedIn for “green” groups yielded 1,520! •  Recent Amazon search for books on social networks: >  12,137 books about Twitter >  6,025 books about My Space >  3,033 books about Face Book >  717 books about LinkedIn
  24. 24. Quick Quiz on Social Networking •  Do you Google a potential candidate before making an offer? •  Do you tweet on Twitter? •  Have you created a Twellowhood? •  Are you currently blocking access to Myspace at work or have malware protection? •  Do you agree that web 2.0 is just another fad? •  Have you had an encounter with a “virtual world”? Wii Fit….. •  Do you blog or feel bloated after a large meal?
  25. 25. Context: What is Social Networking? •  Social networking: any application or website that links communities of people together through the ability to upload and share media such as photos, videos and bookmarks, blogs, or to a message or link with friends, or to make new ones.
  26. 26. The World of Social Networking…and it Changes Every Day!
  27. 27. Talent Management Strategies: The cost of Using Social Networks Versus Job Boards •  Facebook Free •  MySpace Free •  Youtube Free •  LinkedIn Free •  Blogs (Word Press) Free •  Twitter (application) Free •  Monster $$$ •  Career Builder $$$ •  Niche boards $$ •  Micro sites $$ •  Assoc. website ad $$ •  LinkedIn Corp. $$
  28. 28. Promote Green Recruiting to Attract and Retain: What are Your Core Values? In a report by Sustainable Business Network of Washington (SB NOW) they give us a great list to why a company should go green. Their number one reason? 1.  Increasing employee satisfaction, retention and productivity 2.  Improving operational efficiency and effectiveness 3.  Saving energy, water and raw materials 4.  Shielding yourself from escalating energy and water prices 5.  Branding the business and differentiating it from the competition 6.  Developing a positive, proactive relationship with local compliance inspectors 7.  Reducing pollution, waste and greenhouse gas emissions 8.  Avoiding fines and other sanctions green guide and certification
  29. 29. Ten Best Green Jobs for the Next Decade Farmer, Forester, Solar Power Installer, Energy Efficiency Builder, Wind Turbine Fabricator, Conservation Biologist, Green MBA and Entrepreneur, Recycler, Sustainability Systems Developer, and Urban Planner Fast Company: Anya Kamenetz Jan 13, 2009 Illustration by Erika Schneider
  30. 30. EVP and the future of Social Networking and sustainability Company Commitment Employees Employee Value Proposition/Brand Health and Financial Recruiting/ Training and Pay, Work/ Work Social Well-being Security Orientation Career Recognition, Life Environment Networks Development Performance balance Sustainability Leadership programs Program Communication Delivery Content Vehicles Channels
  31. 31. I. Form a Sustainability Team and Set Strategy What are you going to commit to in the next 6 months, 9 months 12 months to make a shift to sustainability II. Evaluate: Collect Data What measurement, metrics, statistics and benchmarking data will you use III. Eliminate: Business Processes and Waste TQM, process mapping – look at every Talent Management process from recruitment through reward and recognition programs IV. Illuminate: Align to Employment Brand and Promote Embed in your efforts into your: EVP, website, recruiting materials, staffing initiatives, video, podcasts, MySpace page and measure attraction, retention, candidate perception…
  32. 32. Questions and Final Thoughts •  Get started – don’t be left behind! •  For more information on how to live green check out: • • • •