Lauren Smith, Senior People and HR Manager
It’s fair to assume that those working in climate jobs care about the environment, and that’s certainly true for us at Global Action Plan (GAP). But we don’t just want our staff to demonstrate behaviour that is both good for people and the planet, we want them to benefit from it too!
That’s why we think it’s important to offer staff benefits and ways of working that complement the vision and values expected of those working in an environmental job. This gives us authenticity in the values we share with our staff and is the foundation for building the organisational culture those values speak about.
Our ways of working send a direct message to staff about how much we value them and their time, so our priority is always work-life balance. This, in turn, gives our staff time to prioritise people and planet with the choices they make.
Staff benefits for Clean Air
Like an increasing number of organisations, GAP staff benefit from remote or hybrid working options which give them back some of the time that might otherwise be spent commuting as well as reducing potential contributions to air pollution from additional commuter traffic.
We also offer generous holiday entitlement and flexibility in when and where our staff work their hours. This, in turn, can allow them to make choices for slower, less polluting travel options when planning how to reach their chosen workplace or holiday destinations.
Beyond that, we also want to impact the systemic drivers of climate change, and we believe others working in climate jobs want to do the same. One way to achieve this is through the power of pensions. We ensure we provide all our staff with the option of an ethical pension fund, which can be an effective way to support them in their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint.
Staff benefits for Compassion & Post-Consumer Values
At GAP, we know that the more you exercise your compassionate values, the stronger they become.
That’s why we offer all staff the opportunity to do two volunteering days each year to do sustainable community building activities. This can be anything from giving talks on sustainable living or working in environmental jobs to helping out at a local community group or food bank. It allows our staff to give something back to their communities whilst boosting their own compassionate values too.
We also want our staff to have more time to spend with family and friends, more time to support local businesses and more time to make and repair things. All of which help to grow the compassionate values we want to see at the heart of a sustainable future. That’s why we offer high levels of flexibility in how and when we work.
As part of this, we strongly encourage part-time work to give our staff the time to make more compassionate choices and minimise their unnecessary consumption of stuff. We make this benefit a clearly available option throughout our recruitment process and within our organisational policies and practices. More than half of the staff at GAP have taken up this option.
Climate conversations are playing an ever-increasing role within businesses, whether or not you work in an environmental sector job. So factoring climate focussed values into your organisation’s benefits not only helps people and the planet, it can also help your organisations attract and retain talented staff that share these values.
We would love to hear more about what other organisations within the sector, and beyond, are doing to demonstrate their values through staff benefits.
Follow Global Action Plan on Twitter and let us know what you are doing to demonstrate your organisational values.