Advanced People Strategies Wednesday, November 15, 2023

We hear lots of discussion about sustainability, but within organisations, who owns it, and who should be seriously focused on driving actions that can make a difference? The CEO? Finance? Operations? Probably all of them. HR is uniquely placed to add substantive input and energy in this critical area.

The challenges of sustainable business practises can run from the decision to pay a living wage, to how leaders are developed to create the right levels of psychological safety in order to create a more innovative environment where new solutions and initiatives can be developed and exploited. 

The employee value proposition is also important in attracting and retaining new talent for the organisation, bringing in new skills and important values.    

With green agendas driving everyday decisions in technology, purchasing, legislation, and of course, climate change, sustainability is now a top priority.

The CRF event 'HR's Role in Sustainable Business' featured presentations from thought leaders and practitioners, as well as interactive discussions. Here are some of the key takeaways that our trusted advisor Rob Field captured:


  • HR has a strategic role in talking about the Why and the How of Sustainability and getting aligned, driving clarity and keeping it on the agenda.

  • Creating and developing the right culture for change, innovation and diversity of thought can add great value.

  • The employee value proposition is a key aspect of attracting the right talent, focused on sustainability and creating new value.

  • Helping and supporting leaders to look outside the organisation for collaborative opportunities, and in preparing leaders in developing skills to facilitate change.

  • Employee participation is essential and HR can create opportunities that engage others.

The event concluded with a call to action for HR to take a proactive and leading role in driving sustainable business. Sustainability is not only a moral imperative, but also a strategic opportunity for organisations to create competitive advantage and long-term value.

Further Reading:

CRF Research Report: HR’s Contribution to Sustainable Business

As programme partners Advanced People Strategies (APS) look forward to continuing their relationship with CRF in 2024.