Check out my article in Forbes “When Age And Gender Work Against Your Job Search”
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Check out my article in Forbes “When Age And Gender Work Against Your Job Search”
I am struck by the number of women over 50 who share with me (candidly of course) that they feel a gender plus age bias in their job search. This subject is not addressed in our society but these women feel it very strongly. We published this article “When Age and Gender Work Against Your Job Search” in Forbes.com.
CSR and Sustainability are rewarding fields to enter, and most professionals are motivated by their values rather than desire for monetary rewards. However, sustainability professionals do want to be compensated fairly. Because sustainability continues to evolve and is a relatively new field, neither hiring managers nor job seekers know exactly what appropriate compensation is.
A few studies have been published in this area: Boston College’s 2010 Profile of the Profession includes a gender comparison of CSR salaries, and Greenbiz published a comprehensive Salary Survey earlier this year.
Here’s the skinny. Below I shed some light on what sustainability professionals should be expecting in compensation based on several factors.
What is the Truth?
I’m hoping to help hiring managers and employees benchmark what is fair. The source of this information is the hundreds of sustainability professionals I have interviewed during my searches. In the course of the recruitment process, these professionals disclose their salary.
While the information is anecdotal, I have observed consistency across so many candidates that I am confident that the salary information I share here is valid. As such, this article has useful information for both employers and employees.
Salaries Vary at the Surface; Dig Deeper for Enlightenment
Overall, salaries vary. The salary range that I have observed for sustainability professionals ranges from $48,000 to $500,000. Not too helpful.
However, this wide range narrows when one adjusts for key factors. After taking these into account, the salaries become much more consistent and predictable.
The key factors are:
In fact, when I take these factors into consideration, CSR salaries become so consistent that I am able to guess a candidate’s salary with amazing precision.
What, exactly, are the salaries?
Two of the most important factors are level of the position and experience. Clearly, these are also interrelated. Let’s take a look:
Heads of Sustainability / CSR: Based on my conversations with more than 30 Director-level CSR candidates, $150,000 is the average (mean) income for Director-level CSR positions. Most commonly, Director-level salaries fall in the range of $120K-$130K. A Vice President-level leader earns about $220,000. These positions can easily reach in the $300-$350K range for base salary.
Recent MBA graduates: Those with less work-related experience, such as recent MBA graduates, can expect to earn $100,000 plus or minus $20,000 for a CSR position.
The assumption that sustainability professionals earn less than other comparable positions is false if you hold all the factors listed above constant. I call this the ceteris paribus assumption, the Latin term for “all things being equal.” If you are a hiring manager wondering what salary to offer your new CSR hire, you don’t have to look far; rather, look at who this hire’s ” “near” colleagues will be.
A CSR professional is likely to earn a similar salary to those working in the same department for which sustainability falls. In other words, if the CSR Director sits within Public Affairs, their salary will be similar to their parallel level colleagues in Public Affairs.
To test the ceteris paribus assumption, let’s visit Salary.com. Note that while Salary.com publishes salary information for such seemingly obscure titles as “Child Life Specialist,” a keyword search for “sustainability” and “responsibility” return nothing at all. Salary.com estimates that a Director of Marketing based in San Francisco with an MBA will earn $147,000. This supports my finding, as discussed above, that other marketing salaries compare evenly with sustainability salaries.
CSR Salaries Don’t Always Measure Up
Still, despite the desire to be fair, CSR salaries are not all together fair. They fall short in three areas:
Transferability: Lack of internal upward mobility
Once the CSR professional gets her foot in the door and lands a job, eventually they will be concerned about their own career advancement. What comes next for a CSR Manager? Is it a CSR Director? Is there availability in your company for that role? Because the CSR department within any company tends to be relatively small, the employee has fewer options for professional advancement internally. Her non-CSR co-workers have greater flexibility and internal mobility options over time.
My experience leads me to conclude that CSR employees are more committed to sustainability than they are to their employer. This leaves the employee with fewer options with their company. They have fewer options to move within the company to other departments and are more likely to move to another employer. Taking that one step further to salaries, an employee with less room for advancement and mobility has equally fewer opportunities for salary increases that would accompany a promotion.
Comparisons to other departments within the same company
We have seen that a CSR professional’s salary is in line with that of other staff in the same department as CSR sits. But, CSR departments across companies are all over the org chart. Sometimes they fall under Supply Chain, sometimes Human Resources (HR), sometimes Public Affairs. This is where CSR salaries can fall short. For example, careers in human resources are notorious for low compensation. If a CSR position is based in the HR function, then it will likely fall short compared to a CSR department housed in another company’s legal department.
Start-Ups: Lack of resources
Where salaries clearly fall short is within start-up situations or amongst fledgling small businesses. The unfortunate reality is that some socially responsible businesses pay their hard-working staff unfair wages. Truth be told, the candidate does not have a lot of negotiating power. One would hope that the socially-responsible employer would compensate their employees fairly, but this is not always the case.
How Do the CSR Salaries at Your Company Measure Up?
Do they fall on the low end? This isn’t necessarily a negative. Low salaries can be good for the employee. A low salary increases the employee’s flexibility and security. She becomes more adept at changing jobs. Potential employers find it attractive when a candidate takes on a lot of responsibility with a relatively low salary. Also, in the time of layoffs, her job is more secure.
Do they fall on the high end? If so, appreciate the significance your company puts on sustainability.
What Can You Do?
A good first step would be for all involved to be more transparent about salaries, just as the CSR field strives to be more transparent overall. As a hiring manager, benchmark other companies. As an employee, agree to share your salary with someone in a comparable role at a comparable company if they agree to do the same.
Finally, consider the position in light of the factors identified above. A better understanding of these salaries will make both employees and employers feel they are being compensated fairly.
Yes, Job sharing is unconventional.
But let’s take a moment and consider whether job sharing is a viable option for you as a way to balance your work and personal life. When two professionals form a partnership to perform one job, often at the cost of morphing into one identity, we call that role job sharing. Most commonly, job sharing is an option for working mothers striving for greater balance. Not only does this option create happy, loyal workers, it also contributes to greater productivity in the office.
Is job sharing for you? An analysis:
Clarifying the role. Job Sharing Is Not…
Two people doing a part-time job.
Job Sharing Is…
One job description, one job, and one identity created by two people.
Because the two perform one job, their identities often morph. In fact, one such job sharing team said that clients often did not know which of the two was on the receiving end of the call. And the job sharers regard this as a mark of success.
While it is not always women who job share, they certainly form the vast majority; and unsurprisingly, are often moms. Job sharing, however, isn’t just for mothers but for anyone looking to bring more equilibrium to their work life balance.
Meet Three Job-sharing Pairs
Let me introduce you to three job sharing duos. Note that they are referred by a single name, a characteristic of many who job share.
Job sharing takes a leap of faith and a willingness to overcome obstacles. The decision to take this route comes with fear amongst all stakeholder groups — fear that you won’t get along with your job share partner, that your peers won’t be supportive, and that others will doubt the arrangement can work, or worse get confused, and that you will have to repeat everything twice.
Meghanna explained that the greatest challenges are up front. Any couple in a job share needs to take the time to figure it out for themselves. They develop a system of communicating and sharing information. Because there are so few existing models to emulate, it takes initiative and enthusiasm to go against the norm and develop what works best for you.
Over time, the fears dissipate.
For the job sharer, however, one of the biggest fears is the perception associated with job sharing: that job sharing is equivalent to taking the “mommy track,” and that it slows down one’s career.
Certainly it does not halt one’s career like it would for a parent who decides to quit working, but job sharing will most likely get someone off the fast track, said both Meghanna and PaigeDonna.t. Although for community development executives Nora/Sarah, job sharing had none or very little impact on their career paths..
Benefits of Job Sharing
Maggie Chotas and Betsy Polk Joseph, a pair of job sharers who started Mulberry Tree Consulting, are currently writing a book on job sharing. Drawing on their research of more than 80 women business partners and job sharers, they say job sharing “isn’t for everyone but if both job sharers are willing and able to invest in the communication, trust and accountability that makes it work, it really works and is a win/win for all.”
What I learned from talking to these three pairs is that they are hard workers with a very strong work ethic. They feel accountable to their job share partner and all the other stakeholders to demonstrate that job sharing works. They are mega-productive ensuring that their time at work is 100 percent working; whereas before they were constantly apologizing for missing work due to family needs. They are extremely loyal — loyal to each other and loyal to their employer for allowing them to have this opportunity (as PaigeDonna put it).
The duos agree that the benefits far outweigh the obstacles and challenges. As Anna Milar said, “I never want to do this job on my own again.”
A Matrix of Benefits and Challenges to Job Sharing
Given that sustainability strategy is frequently approached using a stakeholder analysis, let’s explore the benefits and challenges of the job share from the perspective of the key stakeholders: job sharers, their bosses, the organization as a whole, clients, and peers. At the end of this article, you will find insights into the logistics and tips to get started.
Below is a chart summarizing the benefits and challenges from a stakeholder perspective:
|The job sharing duo||• Enhanced work life balance
• Bouncing ideas off of each other achieves greater results, innovation, inspiration and confidence
• Accountability to another person
• No longer have to apologize for missing work time for family related issues; doctor appointments are scheduled during their non-work time.
• Situation is a great role model for their kids
• Work is more enjoyable and fun
|• Figuring out how to make it work takes time up front.
• Risk about whether it will work.
• Career advancement slows down or is harder to move forward when you are perceived as doing half a job.
• HR benefits (ie: 401K contribution) are compromised or lost.
• Being in a jobshare requires a lot of work to stay aligned, so that you can operate seamlessly as a team. And yes, you have to work harder to do that.
• Not easy to disagree with your job share partner. Although debate can lead to greater outcomes, it can also take up more time.
|Boss / manager||• Promotes retention
• Two minds think better than one
• Greater productivity
• Complex jobs may achieve greater results with a job share team
• Offering a work/life balance option motivates employees.
• Accountability to each in the pair implies less oversight required by the boss
• Better coverage for sick and vacation days when one can cover for the other
|• Trepidation at the beginning
• More complicated than the norm
|Clients/customers||• Clients are ensured 100 percent coverage
• Role model for how this choice can work
• Loyalty to employers
• Greater retention
|• Initial hesitation that it will be confusing and that they will have to repeat themselves; but after they experience it they see that it works well.|
|The organization as a whole||• Retains great employees rather than losing them to their demands outside the job • The pair work very hard and efficiently • Great institutional memory – greater documentation of their work||• HR might not know how to approach a job share.
• Requires additional work for Human Resources.
|Peers||• Jobsharers can take-on some extra projects
• Vacation backup coverage.
The Nuts and Bolts: Logistics
Job sharers develop a process for sharing information and communication. The technology of today makes job sharing a greater possibility. For example, PaigeDonna share one voicemail and one email address. Both women work from home two days per week and overlap one day a week at the office. The voicemail messages are emailed as audio files to their shared inbox, which both are able to access on their work computers in real-time from home.
Job sharers work 50 percent to 75 percent of a full-time job and always build some overlap time into their week. They need to figure out what the availability of employee benefits are. This can be yet another challenge about the job share. Depending on the employer, going 50 percent could imply a 100 percent loss of benefits. For PaigeDonna, they chose to work 75 percent of the time (3 ten hour days) to have access to the majority of benefits. A socially responsible employer should offer benefits at the percentage of time such as 50 percent benefits for 50 percent time.
Nora Bloch noted the importance of support from her boss/supervisor in ironing out any bumps along the way. “In my experience, a thoroughly supportive supervisor is crucial for a job share. Our boss has been fantastic — especially when we first started the job share, she was very protective of our arrangement so that our days off were really off, and helped our coworkers and clients adjust to the job share structure.”
How to Explore Job Sharing Yourself or for Your Employees
I encourage you to explore job sharing — either for yourself, others, or your company as a whole. Meghanna says, “It is surprising how many positions really are suited to job share, and the roadblocks aren’t as big and many as you may think. Many folks would have said that our job would never lend itself to a job share given the confidential nature of our work but this couldn’t be further from the truth.”
Simply identify a partner and explore together how it might work. If it seems like a good fit, write up a proposal. PaigeDonna recalled that it took about 10 hour to write theirs. The plan should includes details of how it will work logistically (email, desk, phone, employee benefits, hours), Then submit it to management. As both PaigeDonna and Meghanna shared, they had never seen a proposal so quickly accepted by the powers that be.
As a corporate social responsibility (CSR) recruiter, I study job postings. I have been recording job postings for the past 6 years. Just last month I published my biennial CSR Jobs Report identifying trends in corporate social responsibility. Among the most notable findings is the increase in senior-level corporate positions—those with VP and Director titles. Before 2006, none of the job postings had a title of VP or above. A number of factors are involved to explain the finding. Most notable is the increased value being placed on CSR as a component of corporate strategy. This elevates the importance of positions performing this role. According to Dave Stangis, Vice President of CSR and Sustainability at Campbell’s Soup: “The emergence of the VP of CSR and VP of Sustainability titles seems proof of the growing strategic business position of CSR.”
But why stop at Vice President? How high can the title go? What about a Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO)?
The first time I heard of this CSO title was from a reporter who called me as a subject matter expert for an article on the emergence of CSO’s. I had never met a CSO, and I am a recruiter of sustainability executives with 13 years of CSR experience. The article was dropped. Upon further digging I’ve concluded that this term has been used by media to refer to the senior-most person in charge of corporate social responsibility. For the sake of this article, I decided to create my own search for the CSO.
Chief Sustainability Officers do exist.
Intrigued, I checked further and found that the media has used CSO title to refer to the senior-most person in charge of corporate social responsibility, even when the position had a different title. For example, an article headlined, Meet Google’s Chief Sustainability Officer, turned out to be about a 26-year-old who implemented some pretty cool greening strategies, but her title was Corporate Environmental Programs Manager.
Recently, I decided to conduct my own search for the CSO as well as to create my own definition of the role. It turns out that Chief Sustainability Officers do exist.
In my definition, CSO is not simply the senior-most CSR professional for a company. Rather, the individual 1) holds the title Chief Sustainability Officer, 2) sits amongst the top leaders of the company to make key strategic decisions and 3) is listed on the company’s 10-K, the SEC filing that identifies the corporation’s accountability to shareholders. These final two points are particularly important as they suggest that Sustainability is owned at the top and integral to strategic decision-making.
On LinkedIn, I searched two groups to find some CSO’s. There are 4 CSO’s in the group Sustainability Executive NeTwork (SENT) out of 415 total members. And there are 3 CSOs out of 75 members of the Chief Sustainability Officers Network.
In searching all 10-K’s, though, I found just 2 CSO’s: David Clary from Albermarle Corporation and Frank O’Brien-Bernini from Owens Corning. I also found that those with the CSO title typically had one or more additional titles. Below are some of the CSO’s I found.
|Frank O’Brien-Bernini||Owens Corning||Vice President & Chief Sustainability Officer|
|David Clary||Albermarle Corp||Vice President & Chief Sustainability Officer|
|Linda Fisher*||Dupont||Vice President DuPont Safety, Health & EnvironmentChief Sustainability Officer|
|David Kepler||Dow||Executive Vice President, Business Services,Chief Sustainability Officer, Chief Information Officer|
|* An executive but not a member of the CEO’s office.|
It is no coincidence that all of these are from the chemical and buildings industry.
Their titles make them responsible for not only greening their own operations but also greening their products. Just as CSR titles began to proliferate a decade ago, the CSO title will become more common as companies follow their competitors’ lead.
I believe that “CSO” is a title that senior-most CSR executives will increasingly carry. They will achieve this not by their individual might and muster, but because more of their peers at competing companies have taken on the title. Should this become industry best practice, questionnaires, surveys and shareholder resolutions will nudge the title further along.
Owens Corning CSO, Frank O’Brien-Bernini, says this about the position:
The emergence of the CSO title is indicative of the growing trend of sustainability as a core business strategy. Sustainability is most effective when its execution is embedded throughout the organization, however, like all “Chief” roles, it’s critical that there is a distinct accountability for functional excellence…and that a high, wide and deep sustainability perspective is integral to the executive leadership team where key decisions are made and strategic direction is set.
After all, few big companies operate without a CEO, COO (chief operating officer) and CFO (chief financial officer). Many have CMOs (chief marketing officer). When they are joined in the C-Suite by the CSO, we’ll know that sustainability has finally become integral to the core of business.
Trends in the Market
Weinreb Group (formerly Sustainability Recruiting) published our biennial CSR Jobs Report, which followed trends of corporate social responsibility job postings over six years from 2004 to 2009. One of the key findings revealed an 80 percent increase in CSR job postings between 2006 and 2007 — and then a precipitous 57 percent decline between 2008 and 2009.
There are two divergent trends in the marketplace that explain this: The economy and the sustainability movement. As the figure below shows, the economic downturn in 2009 put a large percentage of sustainability efforts on hold. Countering this, the sustainability movement has gained momentum, particularly in 2010.
We also found an increase in senior level CSR positions. Before 2006, the VP title did not exist in CSR job postings; by 2009 almost 20 percent of CSR posts were for VP-level positions.
Around the same time as our report, the Boston College Center on Corporate Citizenship published their excellent Leadership Competencies for Corporate Citizenship. This presents a competency model for CSR leadership positions. The framework suggests that being a change agent is a key competency for a CSR leadership position. CSR is a relatively new initiative within a traditional corporate structure. Therefore being able to affect change internally and externally is a key competency.
What Do These Trends Mean?
Sustainability jobs exist, but not in the corporate sector as you might initially assume. Positions within the sustainability department of a well known brand are far and few between.
Furthermore, the data shows that those positions that are posted are most likely not the right fit for a graduating MBA. They often require greater leadership experience (demonstrated by the rise in VP postings) than a graduating MBA likely has, or they require a sustainability specialization.
How can I get a corporate sustainability/ CSR job without corporate experience?
The #1 challenge for many CSR and sustainability jobseekers seeking corporate positions is that they do not have previous corporate experience. Moving a CSR and sustainability agenda forward from within the corporation is crucial to a job candidate’s success. The best ways to get your foot in the door are networking, internships, practicums, and short term consulting. Persistence and self confidence are the two qualities required to make the switch.
I am currently getting my MBA and have long term social responsibility aspirations, how can I focus my first job/summer internship?
Think about where you want to be 10 years from now. What 3 jobs over 10 years will get you there? From your MBA school, you can choose a traditional or nontraditional path. A non-traditional path takes a lot of initiative and persistence. A traditional path can give you building blocks that can solidify the skills you learned in business school.
I am overwhelmed with the options, how do I decide?
Choose 3 paths and explore each of them simultaneously. Exploration entails informational interviews and reading. Then revisit the paths. Are there job opportunities that fit your skills and experience? If there are hundreds of job opportunities along that path then you need to narrow the path. If the opportunities are few and far between, then you need to broaden your path or switch directions.
How do I know that a certain position is a good fit?
A good fit is defined by the right give- and- take balance. What do you offer the position? What do you gain by taking the position?
Do you have any general application tips?
San Francisco, CA. January 15, 2008 – There are more corporate social responsibility (CSR) jobs than ever available to MBA candidates, according to a new, multi-year study by Net Impact and Ellen Weinreb CSR Recruiting. However, the growth in candidates’ interest exceeds the growth in positions available.
CSR Jobs Report 2007 was published today by San Francisco-based Net Impact, which works with MBA graduate students and professionals, and Berkeley-based Ellen Weinreb CSR Recruiting.
Using two of the leading sources for CSR-type jobs – Business for Social Responsibility’s (BSR) jobs page and CSR-Chicks, a listserve for CSR professionals based out of London – the study found a 37% increase per year in the number of CSR jobs posting over the past 3.5 years for a total of 1255 job postings. According to BSR’s President and CEO, Aron Cramer, “Our jobs board is viewed by our members as an indispensable resource for finding quality staff.”
Net Impact has seen a growing interest in MBAs looking for jobs in the CSR space. Since 2004, active membership has grown from 2,600 to nearly 5,000 in 2007. Members join Net Impact to access many career resources and to learn more about companies that are leaders in the CSR space. According to Karin Cooke, Net Impact’s Career Program Director, “An increasing number of MBA students hope to find a career that blends business acumen with positive contributions to society and the environment. As this report shows, the demand for CSR jobs is tremendous. We advise members to not only look for traditional CSR jobs, but also look for functionally mainstream positions within companies with strong CSR and environmental values.”
The New Year often encourages reflection and leads people to look for change and new directions. This report helps guide job seekers to look at new opportunities and remind employers about the benefit of highlighting their sustainability practices.
Three Sectors Cashing in on Green
Environmentally focused jobs are one of the fastest growing areas, especially in clean-technology, consumer products, and public relations.
Joel Makower, executive editor of GreenBiz.com, notes clean-technology companies are a specific area of job growth. He says, “There’s a groundswell of interest among MBAs and other job seekers in companies whose products and services are in such fields as renewable energy, alternative transportation, green building, and advanced materials.”
Ellen Weinreb refers to the rise in consumer products-related environment jobs as the “Wal-martization of sustainability.” She says, “Wal-Mart is raising the bar by encouraging its suppliers to ramp up their sustainability efforts, and the sustainability jobs follow.”
Other market sectors are also climbing on-board the green bandwagon in greater number. Major Public Relations companies – such as Edelman, Fleishman Hillard – are starting or expanding “sustainability practices” focused specifically on clients’ green strategies. Financial markets have also gone green, with an increasing number of companies focusing on emissions trading, green venture capital, and green banking.
Graduate Schools Building Green
Graduate schools recognize this combined need for both environment and business expertise in the marketplace. “We find the demand from employers for qualified students with career interests in both business and the environment is growing,” says Bryan Garcia, Program Director for the new Center for Business and the Environment at Yale University, in New Haven, Connecticut. “It is vitally important that academic institutions work hard to meet this growing workforce demand to better prepare leaders for business and society while helping to solve the problems that matter.”
In addition to Yale, other graduate schools are ramping up their business and environment offerings such as the recently announced $10M gift from Dow Chemical Co. to UC Berkeley in California, to develop a Sustainable Products and Solutions Program.
According to CSR Jobs Report 2007, the average annual salary for someone working in a socially responsible job was $67,000, with most of those jobs based in London. Only 17% of jobs postings disclosed salary information. Says Weinreb, “As a recruiter, I only recommend disclosure of salary information when the salary is particularly low. For this reason, I think the $67,000 figure is lower than the true average.”
In addition to London, the other top geographical hubs are San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Boston. The companies with the most number of listings were Burbank, CA-based Walt Disney with 23 postings, Beaverton, OR-based Nike Inc. with 15 postings, and Seattle, WA-based Starbucks with 14 postings.
Study by Net Impact & Ellen Weinreb CSR Recruiting
•Inform MBAs and companies about the CSR Jobs Market
•Increasing growth in CSR jobs
•Demand from MBA level candidates still outpaces supply
Companies, with specific CSR jobs or not, can attract top talent by highlighting their work in CSR and environmental issues.
•Key Findings: Supply and Demand
– In Depth: Supply
– In Depth: Demand
Net Impact is an international nonprofit organization whose mission is to make a positive impact on society by growing and strengthening a community of new leaders who use business to improve the world. We offer a portfolio of programs to educate, equip, and inspire more than 10,000 members to make a tangible difference in their universities, organizations, and communities. Net Impact has a job board that helps socially and environmentally-minded companies connect with top MBA talent. http://www.netimpact.org
Ellen Weinreb’s recruitment agency specializes in CSR. She comes to recruiting after a decade of CSR consulting and coaching hundreds of job seekers. Her clients include Levi Strauss, Sears, Clorox, Hewlett Packard, Nike, and the World Bank. Resources for jobseekers and for hiring managers are available at http://www.ellenweinreb.com
– All job postings on Business for Social Responsibility’s (BSR) jobs page and CSR-Chicks*, a listserve for CSR professionals based out of London. Tracked from January 2004 – June 2007, 1255 relevant positions analyzed
– Criteria applied to ensure a certain level in the job postings:
The position must be full time permanent
The job must have something to do with CSR
Administrative junior-level positions are not included (i.e.:Admin Assistant)
– Net Impact membership numbers tracked from January 2004-June 2007
*- To subscribe to CSR-Chicks send a blank email to: email@example.com
– Multi-national companies (MNC) – Private companies over 1000 employees
– Small companies – Private companies with <1000 employees
– Associations – Support organizations such as BSR or IBLF
– Consulting – Headcount 200-2000 such as Ernst & Young or KPMG. Please note that these firms have many types of CSR practices within the firm, such as Ethics, CSR Strategy, Community Involvement Management or Compliance.
– Compliance – Monitoring firms such as Intertek, Cal Safety, or SGS
– Research – Organizations that focus on research and education such as Great Place to Work Institute or University of Leeds
– SRI – Socially responsible investing organizations such as Calvert or Institutional Shareholder Services. Please note that BSR and CSR-Chicks are not the leading job postings sites for SRI positions so the SRI-related data is not representative of hiring practices within SRI.
– NGO – Nonprofits such as Oxfam or VolunteerMatch
– Public Sector/ Multilateral – Such as the World Bank or National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
• Growth of 37% per year in CSR jobs overall: In 2004 there were 19 postings per month while in 2007 there were 48 postings per month.
• CSR largely outsourced: Service companies (providing consulting or compliance support) have the largest number of postings.
• Multinationals hire for compliance in the apparel industry: Of the 317 positions posted by multinational companies 25% were compliance related. 19% were CSR in general. 15% were community focused and 13% were focused on the environment. The apparel and consumer products industries were the top employers with 25% and 22% positions respectively.
• Top employers were Business in the Community and Business for Social Responsibility: The top CSR employers overall were two leading CSR membership associations in the UK and US respectively, Business in the Community based in London with 86 postings and Business for Social Responsibility based in San Francisco with 53 postings. Other leaders include Cal Safety Compliance Corporation in Los Angeles, CA; Disney in Burbank, CA; Nike in Beaverton, OR; and Starbucks in Seattle, WA.
• Average disclosed annual salary was $67,000: Of the 1255 postings, 216 disclosed salary information. The average disclosed salary was $67,000 with most of those jobs based in London.
• Growing number of MBAs interested in CSR: Net Impact is the only organization of MBAs committed to CSR and sustainability. Active membership has grown from 2617 in 2004 to 4897 in 2007 (87% growth).
• CSR job seekers actively searching: Net Impact has over1000 resumes of interested MBAs looking for both internships and full-time positions. Ellen Weinreb has over 500 resumes in her database.
• CSR job searches focus on three key terms: Net Impact members searching for jobs on its site focus on three categories (in order of frequency): CSR, Consulting, Sustainability.
•MBA programs responding to increase in interest in green jobs: This includes green investments, clean technology, renewable energy, solar and more. Business schools are helping to prepare their students through joint degrees and concentrations in environmental sustainability.
CSR positions have increased on average 37% per year over the past 3.5 years. In 2004 there were 19 postings per month while in 2007 there were 48 postings per month.
• Steady rise amongst all 3 categories
• Independent positions more volatile
All of the 1255 postings were separated into 3 categories: 1) Internal(25%)- working on CSR in their own company, 2) Services (41%)-providing consulting or third party compliance support to companies and 3) Independent (34%) – working in an independent capacity to research, monitor or support CSR.
• Skews low because disclosure of salary occurs when salary is low
• From 2004 – 2005, average disclosed salary was $56,200 USD
• Mostly manager level
• Majority posted by CSR Chicks
• All things equal, for MNCs CSR positions pay less than non-CSR positions
• Net Impact has over 1000 resumes in its database. Almost 600 were submitted in relation to the largest ever 2007 Annual Conference.
-From 2005-2007, the number of resumes has increased by 46%, from 769 in 2005 to 1126 in 2007.
-Net Impact’s database has three types of candidates: first year graduate business students looking for internships; second year students looking for full time positions; and professionals who have their graduate degrees and several years of post-grad experience.
• Ellen Weinreb has over 500 resumes in her database
-Ellen’s recruiting services typically focus on candidates with at least 5 years post-MBA experience.
• University of Michigan – Joint degree between Ross School of Business and Erb Institute (Environmental)
• Yale School of Management – Joint degree with School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. And newly formed Center for Business and the Environment.
• Wharton – Initiative for Global Environmental Leadership
• UCLA – Developing interdepartmental Sustainable Leaders Program
• Haas – New Sustainable Products program sponsored by Dow
• Stanford – MBA from the Business School and an MS in Environment and Resources from the Interdisciplinary Graduate Program in Environment and Resources (IPER) at the School of Earth Sciences.
• Duke – Duke Environmental Leadership Program
• UC Davis’ Graduate School of Business – Partnered with the Energy Efficiency Center and Center for Entrepreneurship to bring Green curriculum to students
• San Francisco State University – Created a Sustainable Business Emphasis
Note: list is illustrative, not comprehensive
• The Wal-Martization of Sustainability
-Consumer packaged goods and apparel companies are finding opportunities in all aspects of their businesses to become more green, including through sustainable packaging, greening the supply chain, and green product design.
-The major P.R. companies (such as Edelman, Fleishman Hillard) have all started “sustainability practices” focused specifically on communicating a companies green strategy.
-Financial markets have also gone green. With emissions trading, green venture capital, and green banks, there are many more options for MBAs interested in finance to go green.
• More job sites cropping up from ones focused on “green jobs” to meta-search engines that are now seeing more CSR postings.
-For a comprehensive list of sites posting CSR positions, visit Ellen’s site: http://ellenweinreb.com/boards.htm
-For jobs targeting MBAs specifically, visit www.netimpact.org/recruit
Job Postings – Logon to the Member Community to see the latest job opportunities from companies eager to hire Net Impact members. Post your resume so hiring managers can find you. https://netimpact.affinitycircles.com/netimpact/postings/index.html
Social Impact Career Handbook- Information on careers in International Development, Green Business, Foundations, Social Entrepreneurship and more.
Career Newsletter – Bi-weekly newsletter featuring new career resources, upcoming Issues in Depth calls and the latest job postings.
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Career focused Issues in Depth Calls – Look for monthly calls focused on career topics
Member stories – Read internship and job highlights from Net Impact members.
New MBA Assurance Protocol – Gain valuable CSR reporting skills and insight through these student projects working with companies who need verification of their CSR reports
Resume Upload – Submit your resume to database
CSR Jobs Sites – Links to over 35 jobs sites where you will find
postings for current openings (http://weinrebgroup.com/sustainable-jobs/useful-job-boards/)
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Ten years ago, I worked as a CSR Consultant for the New Economics foundation in London and often discussed with them which of our two countries was more effective at handling the use of sweatshop labor by large coroprations. In the process, we arrived at a key insight: In the United States, the approach seemed focused on developing effective monitoring programs to combat sweatshops while in the United Kingdom there appeared to be a broader, project-based approach involving multi-sector partnerships.
Today, those initial impressions of focused and broad CSR in the U.S. versus the U.K. have been borne out through my current research: comparing more than 500 CSR jobs postings in the U.S. and U.K. Over the past two years I have tracked all jobs postings coming out of U.S.-based Business for Social Responsibility’s (BSR) jobs board and the U.K.-based CSR-Chicks, a YahooGroups listserv with over 3,000 subscribers — both leading sources of CSR jobs postings for their respective countries. The telling result? The job postings in the U.S. are very specifically clustered within the same sector, industry, and position, while the job postings in the U.K. vary across the board.
This isn’t just about CSR job trends, however. My research also demonstrates how such an elemental difference in approach has significantly affected the “state of CSR” in each country. Here are some of my key findings:
Apples and Oranges?
While the data is compelling, for sake of academic integrity it is important to point out why a BSR and CSR-Chicks comparison is a comparison of two very different fruits. BSR’s job board is a Web page posting mid- to senior-level management positions while CSR-Chicks is a listserve posting junior to mid-range positions. Posting a position on BSR costs at least $100 for non-members while posting on CSR-Chicks is free. Claire Skinner points out that, “the positions that do get posted to CSR-Chicks tend to be from associations, partnerships or clients seeking to raise their profile across the industry.” Teresa Fabian, co-founder of CSR-Chicks and currently senior manager of PricewaterhouseCoopers Sustainable Business Solutions practice, “Members range from veterans, to those who are not really in CSR but would like to be and hence subscribe to keep an eye out on the job posting front.” (And no, CSR-Chicks is not just for women, even though a male counterpart, CSRBlokes, does exist.)
In addition, all Brits I have talked to are very quick to point out that most positions in the U.K. are not posted at all. Claire Skinner says, “The significant volume of work we undertake is search driven and may not be advertised.” U.K. jobs are found through networking. While the U.S. jobs are definitely won with savvy networking, they are also posted (thanks to our Department of Labor and the Equal Opportunity Act).
Finally, it’s worth noting that jobs postings alone do not offer a complete picture of the state of CSR. It would be valuable to know whether these positions are newly created or existing. A newly created position would indicate a specific kind of growth. An existing position could tell us something about turnover. It would also be valuable to know how many CSR positions exist within an organization rather than how many positions are being posted. For example, Nike’s CSR department has had a headcount as high as 90 while only three positions have been posted in the past two years which could suggest little turnover, downsizing or, mostly likely, filling positions internally to further integrate CSR within the business. BSR has a staff of about 50 with 27 postings over the past two years which probably results from growth of the organization and turnover.
The Continental Divide…Ten Years from Now
Now that I’ve completed this ten-year assessment, I can’t help but wonder: What will the “continental divide” in the state of CSR look like in another ten years? I see the U.K. and the U.S. moving toward each other. The U.S. companies will move in the direction of CSR integration, while the U.K. companies will build up their monitoring and compliance efforts. I also predict that more labor supply-chain issues will be rooted in the supplier countries themselves, rather than dictated by the great Western powers. Time — and the CSR job market — will tell.