It is common to seem claims that sustainable business practices help retain staff:

  • A 2019 Fast Company article discussed an (unlinked) survey of 1,000 US employees:

    Nearly 70% of respondents said that if a company had a strong sustainability plan, it would affect their decision to stay with that company long term. More than a third said that they’ve given more time and effort to a job because of their employer’s sustainability agenda. Another 30% said that they’ve left a job in the past because of the company’s lack of a sustainability plan.

  • A Business Leadership Today article about a 2016 study says:

    Sustainability is very important to employees and is an important indicator of employee engagement, retention, performance, and well-being. Employees are attracted to companies that focus on sustainability as part of their business strategy because it gives meaning to the work they do.

However, the evidence provided is poor; surveys without a clear methodology.

Is there more direct evidence of impacts to retention (or recruitment, employee satisfaction, or productivity)?

  • It seems very difficult to accurately measure this because complex decisions like changing jobs are very rarely monocausal. A lot of things will contribute to the decision of an employee to switch or not switch jobs and measuring the impact of any particular one seems close to impossible.
    – quarague
    Commented Aug 1, 2022 at 8:10
  • 1
    I would expect some degree of correlation. A company trying to help saving the environment might be less willing to accept a bullying manager, and that might improve employee retention.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Sep 22, 2023 at 15:04


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