So you want to get an environmental job! Whether you want to work in animal conservation, or in one of the many other fields covered under the wide umbrella of environmentalism, you can find a great variety of jobs that give you the opportunity to escape the tedium of the office for a working life outdoors.
The range of potential jobs is huge. You could be a roaming conservationist like Sir David Attenborough, working to raise awareness of creatures and species around the world. Perhaps you might like to be a research scientist doing exciting work, such as studying ecosystems underwater at the Aquarius research lab in Florida. Or perhaps something closer to home, helping to manage and maintain a local park or wildlife centre. Even if your talents are more “The Office” rather than “National Geographic”, you’ll still find call for your services in the Environmental field. The organizations involved, whether private companies, public groups or charities, all have plenty of paperwork to be done.
In summary, there's two things you need to do to maximise your chances of finding work in the industry. These are:
- Research potential employers and trends in the environmental sector
- Equip yourself with the skills you need to meet the demands of environmental organization employers in the area you want to work
The Beauty Of Small – Who To Approach and Why
The majority of employers working within environmentalism tend to be smaller organizations, generally specializing in a particular area. While larger groups covering broader sections certainly exist, the majority of new jobs tend to be made by the smaller charities and companies operating in the sector. Smaller companies have several great advantages that are actually common across many other industries when looking for jobs.
The first big benefit is that it’s much easier to get an opportunity to talk to the boss, or at least somebody in the company who is knowledgeable, both about it and the industry, and might be able to give you insights into what trends are happening in their industry. Also of value is that it’s much easier to reach somebody with the potential to hire you, or at the very least to tell you what their hiring plans are for the future and what qualifications and skills you’d need to be considered.
The disadvantages of smaller companies are that, given their smaller size, many people have to wear multiple hats, including in recruitment. As a result, smaller companies rarely advertise openly on job boards and the like, relying on people they know and people they contact when looking to expand their workforce. Furthermore, for the more fiscally concerned individuals, smaller companies are generally not able to offer the biggest salaries or benefits packages. While they will surely try to keep key individuals, the truth is that there is usually not as much money around with which to offer high pay and benefits.
By contrast, large companies often have professional Human Resource or recruitment departments which actually work against the interests of most job seekers. The reason being that it is the primary job of an HR department, where it is involved in recruitment, to screen out potential applicants rather than, as might be assumed, the job to find them. This is because, given the huge number of applications for nearly any job that gets posted in a paper or online, HR Departments generally don’t have to look very hard for applicants for most jobs. The real work is deciding which ones are the most suitable to put forward for interview.
However, it’s much easier to find out in general when a large organization is hiring. That same HR department is usually tasked with placing advertisements in the local and national press, as well as online, making it more obvious when an organization is looking to expand. Additionally, as opposed to their smaller counterparts, larger organizations generally have more resources to draw upon and can afford to pay better, though for entry level positions this is far from guaranteed.
It’s generally better, thus, to focus on the smaller organizations when looking to get a first job in the environmental sector. Even if your eventual goal is to work for one of the big players in the industry, by beginning at a smaller group you can get essential experience on the job that will set you up for wherever you want to go.
Improving Your Chances – Getting the Skills and Training You Need
Naturally, you’ll need specific training and skills relevant to the environmental sector in which you want to study in order to get a job. That’s where outside training comes in useful. Once you’ve identified from your research what fields are likely to be expanding and decided where you want to find work, you can find a course to suit your needs. Even if you already took a course in the past, taking a new one will refresh your knowledge and expand it into new fields of study, keeping you informed and relevant as you look to get into the environment field.
Fortunately, ADL has plenty of courses. We have courses in alternative energy, diplomas in zoo keeping, courses in marine studies, ornithology and more. If it flies, crawls, or just sits there and grows, ADL has a course for all your environmental needs.
Get ready for your environment job with a new course from ADL.