Wednesday, July 9, 2008

T-shirt for your thoughts. . .

A reader recently approached The Green Workplace for some recruiting ideas.  We thought it would be a great opportunity to open a discussion that would benefit all of our readers.  The benefits don't stop there, however, we will give away 100% organic t-shirts for the best ideas you post to the discussion!

Question:  Our company has really strong environmental policies and is actively recruiting for a number of positions.  We really want to reach candidates who think Green.  Our company gives free bicycles to employees, recycles, uses organic materials in production, and the roof of our factory is covered in solar panels.  So far, these programs haven't really become the selling point for applicants that we anticipated.  Do you have any advice?

Answer:  Your current employee base is always going to be your most potent recruiting tool. Think of things they may choose to discuss about your company while at happy hour, at Thanksgiving dinner or while they are chatting with another parent while watching a Little League game. Are your green policies going to be among the headlines?  
Here are some other ideas that are likely to prompt personal testimony:

Readers:  Please let us know what you think!  Submit your ideas by posting your responses and send me an email with your mailing address, t-shirt selection and size if you wish to claim your 100% organic t-shirt.


Alex Johnson said...

Arrange a deal with homeworkers to have a garden office built in their back garden/yard. There are countless environmental benefits, they'll save stacks on commuting and they will absolutely shout about you to the rooftops because shedworking is the most pleasant way to work.

Jodi "Millennial 4 Earth" Williams said...

I think the things that make people feel the best about sustainability are the things that impact them personally. So while solar panels are cool, they don't really directly, immediately impact the individual worker. The bikes, on the other hand do.

What about things like:
* Transit subsidy
* Incentives for purchasing hybrid/electric cars
* Free reusable lunch boxes and shopping bags
* Bonuses based on the amount of money the company saved due to energy/water/whatever

Anonymous said...

SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) recently published survey results that indicate green practices are not yet a strong recruiting tool. Candidates will only choose a green company if everything else about the employment package is created equal.

However, green practices were indicated as a very strong retention tool for existing employees.

I think the trick is to keep on with your excellent sustainability practices and definitely get your current employees to talk about them. But, you also need to make sure that all of the other basic needs of candidates are being filled in your employment offers. Don't expect green to make up for a shortfall in compensation or benefits, etc.

Anonymous said...

Great post! I like the idea of using green to recruit young people. Do you know what company it is?

Bridget said...

Do you have a shower at work? No one wants to bike in (especially from farther away) and be sweaty.

Do you have kitchen space that will allow for employees to eat healthy at work?

How about lots of plants? (see for details on how plants detoxify chemicals found in paint, carpet,etc...) Also, having green space outside to lunch/break in is rather lovely during the summertime (or year round, depending on the climate).

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