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Human Resource Management Management School, University of Sheffield Green (Environmental) HRM (C) D Renwick Green HRM Processes: Recruitment Green/EM (Environmental Management) job descriptions for employees And green goals included into managerial job descriptions

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Human Resource Management

Management School,

University of Sheffield

Green (Environmental) HRM

(C) D Renwick


Green HRM Processes:Recruitment

  • Green/EM (Environmental Management) job descriptions for employees
  • And green goals included into managerial job descriptions
  • Graduate perceptions of EM practises (use of Green criteria)
  • Green job candidates use Green criteria when applying for jobs
  • Recruitment of employees who are ‘Green aware’
  • becomes part of the interview schedule

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Green HRM Processes:Recruitment

  • Green employer branding (green employer of choice)
  • Green intro. to inductions (familiarisation)
  • e.g. Health & Safety
  • Becoming a green employer may produce other HR benefits, such as:
    • increased staff motivation and/or engagement
    • reductions in labour turnover and
    • increasing workforce health (CIPD research)

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PMA - Performance Mgmt. & Appraisal

  • Green performance standards & indicators in PMA at all dept. levels
  • Communication of Green schemes for all via procedures/auditing to all levels in PMA scheme, est. firm-wide dialogue on green matters
  • Managers are set green targets, goals and responsibilities
  • Roles of managers in achieving Green outcomes included in appraisals (e.g. familiarisation, & encourage EM learning)

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PMA - Performance Mgmt. & Appraisal

  • Green standards for all dept’s in on-site use, waste mgmt./reduction (e.g.’s EG&G, Kodak, BFI)
  • Mgmt. appraisals assess no. of green incidents, use of environment responsibly, & successful communication of environmental policy
  • Penalties for non-compliance on targets in EM
  • Link EM in PMA to Pay & Reward, stop EM as a ‘fad’

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Training & Development (T&D)

  • Train front-line teams to analyze their work areas in EM
  • Train to > staff concern for & emotional attachment to EM impact
  • Integrating EM training, & processes/material use, use TNA in EM
  • Integrating training on instruction and generation of eco-values
  • Development of employee skills, and competence building in EM
  • Socialisation in Green values/management, use of Green teams in EM
  • Train staff to produce green analysis of workspace

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Training & Development (T&D)

  • Job rotation to train green managers of the future
  • Integrating training to increase staff knowledge in EM
  • Use discussion packs (GEC), suggestions, interactive media (ICI) as tools for EM training
  • Training in EMaspects of safety, energy efficiency, waste management, & recycling / Safety rep’s to give data on green courses
  • Develop Green personal & tacit skills, & knowledge in EM

(C) D Renwick


Training & Development (1)

  • Re-train staff losing jobs in polluter industries (union role)
  • EM affects job skills, so union role here
  • Employers to develop EM training/skills in renewable sector(e.g. T&G at Mill Chemicals)
  • Union rep’s need time to attend Green training
  • Unions include EM in training of union activists(e.g.’s T&G, AMICUS, TUC, TUSDAC)

(C) D Renwick


Training & Development (1)

  • Lack of take-up in training/education in EM
  • Low level of management eco-literacy (hence IEM, UN, & UK courses in EM, and this topic being taught to you today!
  • Line managers enact Green “learning cascade” (Rover Group allocated 350 working days to such an initiative)
  • Educate & train employees in EM business practices(CIPD/KPMG)
  • HR at E.ON/first direct are seen to be key to embed an EM culture

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Training & Development (2)

  • Theory: Advanced EM ispeople intensive, meaning needs employee development to increase tacit skills in EM
  • Need to broaden EM specialists into managers(e.g.’s DuPont, Unisor Sacilor), but how to do this is problematic
  • EM problems are complex, so knowledge is important to understand & utilise (e.g. mobile phones, pollution in 14 production areas!)

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Training & Development (2)

  • Challenge is to install eco-values as there are few models out there to support eco-investment (similar issues to HRM & Org. Perf. case)
  • Few Green courses at Universities – poses recruitment issue for some firms, e.g. those in ‘clean coal’ such as Babcock
  • EM focus on developing personal skills/team-building in global firms
  • Unions want sustainability included into apprenticeships (e.g.’s AMICUS, T&G).

(C) D Renwick

training development 3 e g kent county council kcc
Training & Development (3): E.g. Kent County Council (KCC)

KCC faces barriers to increased ownership in EM:

  • Lack of commitment/will by seniors
  • Cynicism of importance/relevance of issues
  • Lack of resources/time
  • Green fascism/policing
  • New bureaucracy
  • Cost constraints
  • Communication/mentoring issues
  • Lack of training
  • Knowledge gaps

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training development 4 kcc 1
Training & Development (4):KCC (1)

KCC faces problems such as:

  • Few staff being trained effectively
  • Green teams view other staff not resp. in EM
  • Staff give token response/hostile rejection to EM
  • Difficult to maintain EM due to other priorities

KCC is scoring some success, such as:

  • Est. EM onto dept agendas, plans & projects
  • Embracing EM agenda (achieving culture change)
  • Helping dept’s to gain access to funding
  • Implementing programmes in EM (like water/energy efficiency, green purchasing, < paper consumption, transport & waste, promoting resource efficiency.

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training needs analysis tna
Training Needs Analysis (TNA)
  • Is useful to assess training required in EM (what Green knowledge & skills staff need)
  • Options include using specialists or survey staff
  • Org’s may est. firm EM training committee to alert managers that EM is imp. & has resources dedicated to it, e.g. Duke Power, & combine knowledge categories (contextual processes/intra-org) to develop less toxic cleaners - e.g. NUMMI

But problems here include:

  • Extra work for operations mgrs/workers (new rules/ restrictions); ensuring mgrs release staff for EM training; integrating training into PMA; gaps in mgmt decisions/branch performance (technical inadequacy, ignorance, mis-use of time), e.g. ESB

(C) D Renwick


Employment Relations

  • Employee Involvement & Participation (EI&P) in EM suggestion schemes/problem-solving circles (encourages concern/applies skills)
  • Staff independence to form & experiment with green ideas
  • Integrate EI&P to EM - productive maintenance (cleaning, greasing)
  • Employee help-line for guidance in Green matters
  • Tailor Green EI scheme to industry/firm standards (esp. SMEs)
  • Increase line/supervisory support behaviours in EM

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Employment Relations

  • Unions EM agreements(TUSDAC)train union rep’s(GMB, T&G)
  • Green elements into Health & Safety, < exposure to fumes/chemicals
  • Encouraging U.K. employees to use green transport(CIPD/KPMG)
  • Set-up low carbon champions (CEO/Board) e.g. E.ON, < footprints
  • Introduce EM whistle-blowing help-lines, EM grievance & discipline procedure, dismissal for EM breaches (& U.K. legal position)
  • Use/develop social capital in EM, networks, resources (e.g. NUMMI)

(C) D Renwick


Employment Relations (1)

  • EI&P to cut waste, as employees have:
  • the most knowledge of work processes/products,
  • can manage such complex work well, and
  • doing so builds their pride & commitment to work, e.g. SMEs
  • EI&P to < pollution, and > revenue
  • Problem is mgmt record is low on linking EM to H&S
  • EI to motivate workers in EM (detect leaks), & to develop worker EM schemes (recycling), e.g.’s Argos & first direct

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Employment Relations (1)

  • Barriers to > EI in EM:
  • Lack of management support for EM (e.g. Rover/KCC/Accenture)
  • Unions may lack access to EM information, and education, & training in EM – all of which undermine union bargaining power
  • Workers may not see EM as an issue ‘for them’, unlike pay which may be a more direct concern

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employee relations er involvement ei
Employee Relations (ER)/Involvement (EI)

Firms may use EI to generate revenue & reduce pollution:

e.g. 3M, (2,500 solutions/waste release halved/saved $300m, & later estimates of 4,750 projects globally/preventing £1.7bn of pollution/ saved $850m pollution control/raw material costs)

e.g. American Airlinesflight attendantsrecycled 616,000 pounds of aluminium cans (gain of $40,000)

e.g. Dow Chemicals 173% ROI in 1st year.

Other examples include schemes at Chrysler/Jeep, AT&T, Wheeling-Pittsburgh

Firms may establish firm policies to support employee eco-

initiatives, & use supervisors to support employee EM actions:

e.g. GE Plastics, Lucent Technologies, Neste Oy

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employee involvement ei 1
Employee Involvement (EI) (1)

Firms may use EI as it can motivate workers in EM, by:

  • Allowing them to detect leaks in production processes
  • Increase team knowledge of causes of waste, & how to reduce these (as this is delegated to them). E.g’s:
  • Chrysler/Jeep (recycling)
  • AT&T (waste disposal)
  • 3M/Kodak/DuPont/Procter & Gamble (all waste


  • See gains from EI in improvements in EM & workers H&S, & the development of more knowledgeable employees/supervisors in EM as a whole
  • Est. & use worldwide Green forums to share info. Re. EM processes, &/or offer help-line for staff - e.g. Cable & Wireless

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union role
Union Role
  • Unions may act as allies to Environmental Managers (EM’s) to generate self-directed Green initiatives from workers, e.g.

NUMMI & Dunlop

  • Campaign in EM to incl. co-operation with green groups, & focus on H&S concerns re. Hazardous/damaging substances & refusal to handle toxic waste - e.g. Unions & Greenpeace
  • Seek legal rights for workers to paid time-off to attend training in EM, & be informed of outcomes on monitoring discharges/emissions

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union role22
Union Role

Employers may encourage union members to be involved in

Green programmes, e.g. Sony, who do this to < glass

defects/waste glass & < energy use

Be reluctant to involve unions in EM as they see EM as a mgmt issue (e.g. U.K. CBI oppose mandatory Green audits/union role in them, & see them as tools for mgmt control/assessment)

(C) D Renwick

jobs employment
Jobs & Employment

Unions may be caught in contradiction of looking to

support staff on opposite sides of EM conflicts:

  • e.g. Welsh dockers refusing to handle toxic waste were represented by the same union as others at incineration plants asked to dispose of such waste!
  • Jobs growth may occur from focus on EM, e.g. DTI see future for power/wind generation & EM control systems
  • U.K. forecasts – up to 1,000 skilled jobs from using wind technology, & 10 jobs per megawatt of renewable power used
  • 30,000 jobs forecast in UK renewables sector before 2015, & job gains from using bio-mass too

(C) D Renwick

jobs employment 1
Jobs & Employment (1)


May have created 35-78,000 new U.K.

jobs by 2010, & complex schemes may create more

skilled employment than landfill

  • e.g. DTI, estimate up to 35,000 working on ‘green’ jobs in UK by 2020!

Areas of job growth related to EM include:

  • In the energy industry (up from 8k in 2007), & in:
  • solar power/hydrogen/biofuels/coal-to-liquid tech.
  • Issue oflabour re-allocation from non to Green employment (see ILO)

(C) D Renwick


Pay & Reward (P&R)

  • Need for a Green pay/reward system to < waste, e.g. DuPont/3M, & gain knowledge (such as chemistry re. emissions), e.g. Bhopal
  • Tailor packages to reward green skills acquisition (3M pay for them)
  • Use of monetary-based EM rewards (bonuses, cash, premiums)
  • Use of non-monetary based EM rewards (sabbaticals, leave, gifts) & recognition-based ones (awards, publicity, external roles, daily praise)

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Pay & Reward (P&R)

  • Develop negative reinforcements (criticism, warnings, suspensions for lapses) NB: negatives teach little about waste disposal/disclosure
  • Develop positive rewards in EM (e.g. feedback)
  • Establish PRP in EM to gain stewardship/citizenship (esp. seniors)
  • Link EM suggestion scheme to reward system & participation in EM initiatives to career gains (mgrs. advance by helping staff in EM)
  • Use green tax breaks, Line have rewards to motivate employees in EM
  • Difficult to assess staff efforts/results in EM, & to reward it

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pay reward 1
Pay & Reward (1)

Use monetary-based Green reward systems:

  • E.g. BFI,imp. % of mgmt monthly pay bonuses dependent on outcomes achieved in EM
  • DuPont & Neste Oy use exec pay/bonuses for middle mgrs/seniors partly based on stewardship practices/perf. goals in EM - part of bonus system
  • ICI set EM targets for senior mgmt PRP grading

(C) D Renwick

pay reward 128
Pay & Reward (1)

Use recognition-based rewards for mgrs:

E.g. Monsanto/Dow/ICI/Coors (present awards at public meetings)

Duke Power (awards publicised via news articles)

Make recognition at different levels:

E.g. at EG&G for individual/team/division contributions to waste <

Xeroxcompany-wide team excellence awards

Body Shop pay staff to complete Green community service/events

FedExgive 3 months paid leave to work on EM projects

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p r 2
P&R (2)


  • Need to develop rewards to motivate juniors, & link promotions to staff outputs in EM. E.g.’s:
  • Amicus/Legal & Generalannual Green awards scheme (open to all non-mgmt staff)
  • BSkyB: staff build points for Green behaviours on firm credit card to earn > benefits
  • Sky: £1,300 cash incentive for hybrid cars (UoS?)
  • first direct First direct: annual awards dinner recognises EM behaviours
  • CIPD/KPMG: 8% of UK firms reward Green behaviours with non-cash rewards
  • Shell:view (& reward?) staff highly with knowledge / experience in bio-fuels

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p r 3
P&R (3)

Organisations may provide EM incentives. E.g.’s:

  • Car mileage for company cars can be extended to cover bike journeys/loans.
  • Staff can be offered financial substitutes for car allowances encouraging car pooling/sharing.
  • Company cars can be limited to journeys beyond public transport.
  • Tax incentives/exemptions can be used to loan bikes/safety equipment to staff.
  • Organisations can use a less polluting car fleet.
  • E.g. Rover, used suggestion scheme where if savings made by staff were over a certain level, reward for them was a new car!Hence…

(C) D Renwick

  • Dismissal/exit de-briefings could include an EM dimension, as mgrs need to know why staff leave
  • Employers formulate & use whistle-blowing codes, & provide legal protection for users of them
  • Employers avoid stereotyping of whistle-blowers & use of ‘reverse’ whistle-blowing practices
  • Managers to ask if Green issues are reasons for resignations (too little EM? moving to a more Green employer?)
  • Exit interviews & whistle-blower accounts to gauge firm Green-ness

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Equality Act (2006) – Tribunals to decide if ‘Green beliefs’ are grounds for protecting employees against discrimination in employment/vocational training

- similar to those on ‘religious belief’, are such beliefs respected?

Employers may need policy in EM & to respond to ‘Green belief’ requests by employees

(e.g. for less travel, more recycling facilities, more flexible working), to avoid claims that EM beliefs are ignored

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At present:

  • Employees’ personal values aren’t fully exploited towards achieving corporate EM initiatives
  • Personnel/HRfunction appears under-rated and needs to interact with others re. EM matters
  • Many orgs do not use an integrated approach to implement EM programmes & achieving it is difficult due to changing unsustainable practices that staff have learnt over decades
  • Issues arise in changing the approach of some HR staff to green issues– as a minority are actively hostile to EM & feel it detracts from HR being taken seriously as a business partner (CIPD)

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discussion 1
Discussion (1)

Some British HR mgrs question EM, saying:

  • The existence of global warming is not proven, and there is a need for debate on Green issues
  • The EM case is ‘not proven’, & ‘a lot of hype’
  • Green employers are a form of ‘Green extremism’
  • HR should not jump on ‘political bandwagons’, as this does the HR profession ‘no good’ when ‘striving to be taken seriously by business’
  • Problem: HR’s professional identity is close to mgmt. Hart: it is ‘an ally to the present economic system that is destroying the environment itself’
  • Also, need to monitor all mgmt styles used in EM, & to engage mgrs in EM (as mgrs may not care)

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green hr roles
Green HR Roles

HR Generalists (Today?)

Light Green

HR Environmental Generalists (Tomorrow?)


HR Non-Environ. Specialists (Yesterday?)


HR Environmental Specialists (Tomorrow?)

Dark Green

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discussion 3
Discussion (3)

HR role could be to:

  • Guide line mgrs to gain staff co-operation to implement EM policies & seek out allies to change the status quo
  • Integrate HRM & EM, E.g NUMMI use knowledge mgmt, EI, EP, employment screening, training, redundancy, < status differentials, & mgmt style to > EM in practice
  • Use org. culture to create climate of support for participation/collaboration. E.g. NUMMIuse of employee screening for co-operative people, socialisation via intensive training to remove adversarial mind-sets, a no-lay off policy, and reductions in status differentials to generate trust

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discussion 4
Discussion (4)

Many U.K. HR staff embrace EM today. Examples:

  • HR at Cable & Wireless implementing EM programme through global H&S function.
  • E.ONoptimise desk space – encourage working from home (if feasible), use online (live) meetings (to < staff travel between offices), & car-sharing
  • Skycampaign to turn off power sources when staff leave offices, using 100% renewable energy, & introducing solar lighting.
  • First directtravel policy to promote car sharing, and > use of public transport.
  • Boots< car journeys by 20%, use of intranet car-pooling scheme, e-HR helps staff track emissions

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discussion 5
Discussion (5)

CIPD survey:

  • 23% of HR professionals see HR as having ownership of environmental issues
  • 40% see HR should take facilitator role in EM
  • 23% see HR should take an assist others EM role
  • HR are well-placed to lead on introducing EM, as have experience in communication/culture change
  • HR role - HR can develop a report in EM, (incl. policy statement, targets, progress measures, impact assessment), & a policy framework to bind together EM initiatives in transport, flexible working, energy efficiency, & recycling.
  • Use of EM reports may encourage line managers & employees to take pride in EM in their firms

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discussion 6
Discussion (6)
  • Successful EM seen to be underpinned by understanding of work attitudes & personal motivation of staff towards job/org/colleagues
  • E.g. Neste Oy:EM motivators = gender (women more), & professional values, but not pay!
  • Hence importance of intrinsic motivation & vocational call as employee motivators to EM
  • & not ethical concern &/or family/religious values

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discussion 640
Discussion (6)

Emphasis on designing HRM policies that tend to promote worker co-operation/involvement with firm EM objectives

extrinsic factors that centre on EM policies, & intrinsic ones on staff skills/values

Firms need to offer staff motivating devices of immunity & protection when reporting EM issues

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EM in HRM – Green HRM – can be understood through using a process model (detailed above)

Green HRM is relatively new, as the HR function is one of the last management functions to ‘go green’

A future research agenda in Green HRM could include trying to understand what drives Green mgmt./employee behaviours (fear? guilt? other?)

Read our SUMS Discussion paper on Green HRM, at:

& click on PDF in ‘Downloads/download the file’

See CIPD publication People Management for details of their ‘HR goes Green’ campaign

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initial readings
Initial Readings

Renwick, Redman and Maguire (2008)

Jabbour and Santos (2008)

Brio, Fernandez and Junquera (2007)

(see Module Pack for full details)

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