Plastic Pollution: is your Environmental Impact Affecting your Employer Brand?

4 min

It is no secret that the consumer market has been affected by recent coverage of plastic pollution within the media, with ambassadors such as David Attenborough shedding light on this. In the most watched TV show of 2017 (Blue Planet 2) he highlights that “We may think we live a long way from the oceans, but we don’t. What we do here, and in the middle of Asia and wherever, has a direct effect on the oceans – and what the oceans do then reflects on us”.

With the New Year well underway, we consider how consumer businesses can attract better talent by adjusting the environmental impact they make.

In 2017, a report from The Guardian estimated that we buy around 1 million plastic bottles a minute and that the production of plastic would double by 2050. It has recently been revealed that 35% of Britons are seriously concerned with the impact that plastic is having on the environment. The next generation of employees are increasingly aware of the environmental impact their employers are having on the planet.

Company values and environmental principles are becoming increasingly important factors when businesses are looking to attract new talent. Working for a company that aligns with an employee’s beliefs and makes them feel that they are working towards a shared goal is hugely beneficial for both parties. It was recently proven in a study from the UCLA that companies who have a green standard see a 16% rise in employee productivity.

For millennials a job is much more than just a salary, these employees see their work as an extension of themselves. Aligning these values with the company they work for means they are more passionate about the work they do and the organisation they’re part of.

Consumer brands are now having to address concerns around the environment, such as plastic pollution, to ensure that they aren’t missing out on the next talent pool of potential business leaders. Combatting any of these environmental issues will make the employer much more desirable to candidates with these ideologies.

As a consequence, leading companies who have been labeled as ‘the world’s biggest polluters’ such as P&G, Nestle, and Coca Cola, are now having to take control of the amount of plastic waste that they are producing. Coca Cola, who use an estimated 120 billion bottles annually, have now launched a ‘World Without Waste’ initiative which will ensure their product packaging will be 100% recyclable. After a Fairy Liquid bottle, estimated to be at least 47 years old, washed up on a UK beach, P&G have been put in the spotlight. They have announced their commitment to achieving zero manufacturing waste by 2020 and in October they launched a Fairy Liquid bottle made entirely out of recycled Ocean Plastic.  

These are just a few examples of how the biggest players in the consumer market are trying to reduce the amount of plastic pollution they are creating and make themselves more appealing to top talent that are environmentally conscious.

There is a huge range of benefits of promoting green practices which align with employees’ personal ideals. One of these is that it will improve the employee’s opinion of their employer and motivate them to work harder for the cause.

It now isn’t enough for businesses to state on their career site that they are an ethical company, these values need to be carried right through the business as top performing candidates will see through this.  



CSG work in partnership with some of the world’s leading consumer brands and understand the importance of culture fit for candidates and clients.

If your business is looking for senior level consumer candidates that share the values of your company or feel that you aren’t attracting the right talent then please feel free to reach out to me on​ or +44 (0)333 323 2000