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Employee eco expectations put businesses under pressure to act sustainably

New research from Epson shows businesses risk losing talent unless environmental and social impact goals become a priority

A significant 81% of employees say the environmental and social impact of their employer is important and 32% say it’s one of the primary things they look for in an employer, yet businesses are lagging far behind in putting sustainability strategies at the top of their agendas, according to research from Epson.

The research also reveals that 83% of employees believe the use of “green technology” to improve the environmental and social impact of businesses is important. Yet despite the eco expectations of the workforce, only 24% of employees believe that meeting environmental and social impact targets is a priority for businesses.

The findings point to a potentially big risk to businesses in both retaining staff and attracting new talent, particularly among younger workers; 42% of Gen Z employees and 35% of those aged 22-36 years agree that a company having strong environmental credentials can have a significant impact on employee loyalty, compared to 28% for those aged 38 years and over.

Daniel Quelch, sustainability manager at Epson, comments: “Employees are driving the next wave of the sustainability revolution and businesses need to adapt to ensure they’re ready. Reviewing and revising environmental and social credentials is the biggest opportunity for forward-thinking businesses looking to make simple changes that can pay huge dividends.

“Businesses need to understand that every choice they make, from the equipment and technology they buy to how they run their operation, must demonstrate to employees that they are a responsible, eco-centric organisation to work for, engage with and buy from.”