When desk-based workers were sent home to work in March 2020, many began to question their work-life balance, whether they really enjoyed their job and if the organisation was prioritising their wellbeing enough.
Meanwhile, for manufacturing and retail jobs, the pandemic has exposed poor working conditions for workers at Amazon, garment workers in the Boohoo supply chain and fears over job security.
The workforce feels worn out, with one survey finding that 40% of the UK workforce say they have experienced burnout at work during the last 12 months.
These and other changes have led people to re-evaluate their jobs, and along with a rise in ethical consumption, more people are looking for ethical employment.
But what should you look for if you want to work for an ethical employer?
What makes an ethical employer?
Everybody has their own set of ethics and beliefs, and what they consider important. For many ethical consumers and ethical job seekers this might include things like fairness, equality, specific employment practices, and commitment to the environment.
We’ve come up with a list of issues to consider when looking for an ethical employer.
These are also great questions to ask your current employer, which might prompt them to change to more ethical and environmental options in the future.
Structure and values - corporate social responsibility
If you’re a dedicated ethical consumer, you don’t want to be working for a company that may be using tax avoidance schemes, has values that are very different from your own, or doesn’t consider the ethics in its supply chain.
Some things to consider include:
- Is it a charity, third sector organisation, or other non-profit organisation? Although not always free of controversies, these sorts of organisations are generally doing good in society and giving something back.
- Is it a co-operative? Co-operatives are owned by their workforce and members and are more invested in creating a supportive workplace. Several of our recommended brands and best buys are co-operatives .
- Is it a Fair Tax Mark employer?
- Do its values align with what matters to you?
- Does it put ethics into practice with its supply chain e.g:
- Are the broadband and email providers ethical?
- Are cleaning products vegan, not tested on animals, and with limited plastic?
- If refreshments like tea, coffee, herb teas, biscuits, and milk are provided, are these the most ethical and environmental choices including dairy-free milk?