What is Corporate Sustainability Training?

Last updated: May, 2023

What is Corporate Sustainability Training?

People want innovation, but not at the expense of the planet. 

That has led to the rise in public pressure on companies to reduce their carbon emissions and work towards becoming net zero by 2050.

But to get there, we need to address the question: How can companies address their environmental footprint without a foundation of expertise and awareness within their organization?

It calls for a tangible shift in how companies operate because small actions make a big difference.

Without a collective effort from all levels in your business, you’ll struggle to weave sustainability into the fabric of your daily operations.

That’s where corporate sustainability training makes all the difference.

It’s more than an educational program; it’s a transformational tool to align your goals and values with your employees and create a culture of sustainability.


What is Corporate Sustainability Training?


Corporate sustainability training builds capacity for sustainable knowledge and skills for employees. 

It usually includes topics like:

  • Climate action
  • How to create a circular economy
  • Implementing sustainable supply chains
  • Impact measurement and reporting
  • Reducing individual footprints at home and the office


Most importantly, corporate sustainability training helps organizations work towards the UN Sustainability Goal 17. 

Specifically, target 17.9 emphasizes the need for international support in building capacities in developing countries. 

However, capacity building extends beyond Goal 17 and has an important role in other goals.

For example, SDG 8 focuses on promoting sustained, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth. Here, capacity building is key to equipping the workforce with the necessary skills, and that’s where corporate sustainability training comes into play.

88% of employees feel that little investment into sustainability training is the top reason their company isn’t reaching its sustainability goals.

By empowering employees with sustainability-related knowledge and skills, companies can take meaningful steps towards reducing their environmental footprint, achieving carbon-neutral status, and ensuring long-term profitability.

RELATED: What is Environmental Awareness in the Workplace?

Why is Sustainability Training Important?

Why is Sustainability Training Important?


With the increasing awareness and concern over environmental issues, how your business contributes to a sustainable future will impact your ability to thrive in changing markets and hire and retain top-tier talent. 

Your customers and employees want to buy from and work for companies that share their social and environmental values. 

  • 78% of consumers agree that environmental sustainability is important.
  • 84% of customers say poor environmental practices will alienate them from a brand or company.
  • 51% of employees will not work for a company that doesn’t have strong sustainability policies.


And if you claim you’re a “green” company, you need to back it up. Sustainability training for employees shows everyone you’re committed to climate action, and you’re not “greenwashing” the issue. 

A sustainable business ensures all stakeholders and business structures are operating in an ethical, sustainable, and profitable way. To achieve this, you need to invest in green skills that will benefit your employees, business, and the planet.


RELATED: How to Choose The Right Corporate Sustainability Training Program for Your Business


The Business Benefits of Corporate Sustainability Training


Educating your employees on sustainability has a knock-on effect on the planet and your bottom line. Here’s how it can help you thrive in a world where going green is becoming the norm.


Reach Your Net-Zero Goals Faster 


Sustainability training equips your team with the knowledge, skills, and tools to identify and implement effective strategies to reduce your carbon emissions.

Without it, you might struggle to see meaningful change or take longer to reach your net-zero goals.

It’s no longer an option to drag our feet towards carbon neutrality. Global CO2 emissions need to drop by 45% from 2010 levels by 2030 to keep warming within 1.5°C and to achieve net zero by 2050.

But what are the business benefits of achieving your net-zero goals faster?


RELATED: Use These Net Zero Tools to Meet Your Carbon Footprint Targets


Increase Your Efficiency and Reduce Operation Costs


Sustainability training equips your team with the ability to improve resource efficiency. From conversing energy to waste reduction, it empowers individuals to find solutions. 

These practices contribute to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and have a financial incentive. The less energy you’re using, the lower your operating costs.

And it works.

  • General Electric saved $300 million by reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 32% and the reduction of water use by 45%. 
  • Dow has invested nearly $2 billion in improving resource efficiency. The company has saved $9.8 billion by reducing its energy and wastewater consumption.
  • United Airlines Holdings Inc. saved almost $300,000 per year on fuel by switching to a lighter paper stock for its in-flight magazine.


Training employees in sustainability can help identify these cost-saving opportunities, directly benefiting your company’s bottom line.


Improving Culture in the Workplace and Employee Engagement


Aligning employees around sustainability values and goals increases engagement and job satisfaction. 

A survey by Gallup found that  79% of employees feel unengaged in the workplace. This lack of engagement can manifest in:

  • Higher employee churn
  • Lack of commitment towards sustainability goals
  • No sense of purpose at work
  • A drop in productivity


Employees need to know their work matters and that they’re making a difference so that they feel engaged with their jobs. 

Furthermore, 80% of employees in organizations do not receive formal awareness training on emissions reduction despite 70% of employees finding sustainability programs make an employer more appealing.

Sustainability training helps create alignment between our personal values and the company, which can increase engagement, reduce turnover rates, and improve employee happiness.


RELATED: How to Promote Environmental Awareness in the Workplace

Sustainability Training Types: Which One Should You Choose?


Several types of sustainability training are available, each catering to different organizational needs, learning preferences, and operational contexts. 

Here are the main types of sustainability training your company can use:


On-Site Training


On-site or in-person training sessions are held within the company’s premises, offering a hands-on and interactive learning experience. 

It allows for immediate feedback, customization to specific company needs, and for trainers to address questions immediately.

The downside is that some employees may be unable to make it due to meetings or personal reasons. As it’s a live training session, it’s not possible for your team to go back and review it.


On-Demand Training 


Employee engagement platforms like Emission Sentri give you access to on-demand training modules and certifications.

The biggest benefit? It’s fully remote. No matter where your employees are in the world, once your team has access to the software, everyone can access the different training modules.

Employees can work towards their certifications at a comfortable pace and easily fit their green skills education into their work schedules. These are all shareable via email and social media, helping to bring visibility to your commitment to internal and external stakeholders.

And if your team needs a refresher, the training module is only a click away, improving accessibility to climate awareness education.


RELATED: The Best Corporate Sustainability Training Programs


Sustainability Training for Employees: Cultivating a Greener Future

Corporate sustainability training is essential for empowering employees to take the lead in sustainability efforts. It’s a necessary step for companies aiming to thrive in a world that increasingly values sustainable practices.

Embedding sustainability into the DNA of a company addresses the immediate demands of consumers and employees and paves the way for long-term business success and resilience against environmental challenges. 

By embracing this training, companies can unlock untapped opportunities for innovation, efficiency, and growth, all while contributing positively to the planet and society.

Frequently Asked Questions


1. Who should participate in Corporate Sustainability Training? Everyone in the organization, from top management to new employees, should participate in sustainability training. Sustainability is a collective effort, and its success requires understanding and engagement at all levels. 

2. How can companies implement sustainability training for employees effectively? Start by assessing the current level of sustainability knowledge within your organization. Then, define clear learning objectives that align with your sustainability goals and choose the right training programs and certifications to help you meet your goals.


3. How can organizations measure the impact of sustainability training? Organizations can measure the impact of sustainability training by setting clear, measurable goals before the training begins. These can include metrics such as reduction in waste, energy savings, or improved sustainability reporting scores. Surveys and feedback from employees before and after the training can also provide insights into knowledge gained and changes in attitudes towards sustainability.


4. How frequently should sustainability training be updated or repeated? Sustainability training should be an ongoing process, with the curriculum updated regularly to reflect the latest sustainability standards, regulations, and best practices. Additionally, refresher courses or updates can be scheduled annually or biannually to keep employees informed and engaged.


5. Are there certifications available for completing sustainability training programs? Yes, many sustainability training programs, including the ones offered by Emission Sentri, offer certifications upon completion. These certifications can serve as a testament to an employee’s knowledge and commitment to sustainability practices.

Drive Emissions Reduction through Employee Engagement

Engage with your employees on your emissions reduction commitment and progress through multi-channel insights, awareness training, intelligent recommendations using Generative AI and more.