This is part 2 of an article series that aims to provide basic information to help answer a fundamental question — how can a job seeker locate green jobs?
Part 2: The Hidden Green Job Market
Green jobs can be found in a number of areas in addition to online job boards. In some instances employers may not publicize a job opportunity via a traditional online job board for reasons such as time (for example, the company may not be able to invest the internal human resources needed to review a large number of applicants that could arise with a broad-based posting) or capacity (for example, a young company may not have a complete human resources department). Some of the other sources and strategies to locate green jobs include:
1.) Go Direct
Some companies may publish job listings on their website, but not necessarily conduct additional external recruitment for candidates. To access these opportunities job seekers should identify companies they would be interested in working for and review the Jobs or Careers section of their website for potential jobs. Strategies to identify companies include:
- Reviewing membership lists or other resources from relevant industry associations. For example, the American Solar Energy Society provides this list of employers. A list of some industry associations is available on Green Collar Blog.
- Reviewing the list of exhibitors or presenters at industry conferences. For example, there were more than 400 organizations at the Intersolar conference in 2009,
- Reviewing relevant industry publications (for example, Sustainable Industries). These publications may contain news stories mentioning potential employers. Examining the companies who advertise in such publications may also be valuable.
- Reviewing national or local lists and directories of green businesses (such as the Bay Area Green Business Program and the National Green Pages).
Networking can enable job seekers to learn about job opportunities. There are a vast number of approaches and strategies for networking, including attending events by organizations such as EcoTuesday and GreenDrinks, participating in the local chapter of a national organization such as the American Solar Energy Society, or attending programs or conferences such as the Green Festival. There are also internet-based approaches to networking (see point #3). Due to the importance of networking to a successful job search it will be the focus of a future article on Green Collar Blog.
3.) Online Social Media
There are an increasing number of job opportunities posted via online social media channels. For example, all groups on the professional networking site LinkedIn include a "Jobs" tab where job opportunities can be posted. Company representatives (including hiring managers) may use social media to conduct their own outreach for potential candidates. For example, the Green Jobs and Career Network group on LinkedIn currently contains more than 100 job postings in various locations.
4.) E-mail Lists
As with job boards, there are an increasing number of recruiters that focus on careers pertaining to sustainability. A number of these organizations will post positions for which they are currently seeking candidates (two examples are Commongood Careers and Bright Green Talent). A list of some green recruiters is available on Green Collar Blog.
6.) Membership Organizations
Industry associations and other membership-based organizations can offer job postings among their member services. For example, Net Impact, a national organization that focuses on harnessing the power of business for social good, has an extensive set of career services (including a job board and resume tips) as well as an annual career expo.
7.) Academic Institutions
Academic institutions offer a range of job-related resources for their students and graduates. These include access to job listings and job fairs. For example, Stanford University will be holding an Energy & Environmental Career Fair in October and this page on Green Collar Blog lists recent green career fairs held by institutions including the University of Illinois and University of Minnesota. Academic institutions can also be a source of networking opportunities.