The 5 definitions of sustainability recruiting

Many people don't immediately connect "sustainability" and "recruiting," but putting these two powerful concepts together can yield several business benefits.

Sustainability recruiting can have a long-term impact on a company's profitability, productivity and employee happiness. There is not one but rather five definitions of sustainability recruiting.

They include:

1. Hiring sustainability professionals
2. Applying key performance metrics to hiring
3. Aligning with values
4. Using sustainability as a recruiting tool
5. Ensuring well-matched employees and employers stay together longer

Below is a closer look at each definition:

1. Hiring sustainability professionals

Sustainability professionals can be categorized into three tiers. The first tier is the head of sustainability or the chief sustainability officer. The second tier are those who directly report to the sustainability chief within the sustainability office. On average, a head of sustainability has four direct reports, leaving the sustainability office with a mere five employees. That's a lean organization to influence change and implement a broad range of sustainability initiatives.

Beyond the sustainability office is the third tier. They do not work for the sustainability office yet they are integrated and embedded into other business units. We call this layer the "Sustainability Embeds." This is where we are seeing the most growth, plus a formalization of how that embedded layer integrates with the sustainability office via governance structures and dotted line reporting.

2. Applying key performance metrics to hiring

It is important to assure placements are high performers that add value to the company for many years into the future. After all, isn't that what sustainability is all about -- that your workers are strong performers over a long period of time?

Next page: Benefits of performance tools

Job fair image by Eastern Washington University via Compfight cc.