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Powering The Energy Transition

The Crucial Role of Employer Branding

The Competition For Talent

In the non-stop renewable energy sector, there’s a competition that’s just as intense as the race for sustainable solutions. And that’s attracting and retaining talent.

Companies aren’t just competing to lead with the most innovative renewable tech; they’re also striving to be employers of choice for the best renewables talent. Why does it matter? Well, securing the right people means everything if you want to stay ahead in renewable energy and achieve the goals set by COP28.

This report dives into the heart of this competition. Far more than just analysis, it’s a guide for companies looking to step up their game in employer branding and talent attraction. Here, you’ll find insights and strategies on how to stand out in a crowded market and become the go-to choice for the best in renewables talent.

The Booming Renewables Sector

The ten warmest years recorded have all been during the last decade and 2023 was the hottest year on record since 1850 (when records began). Global temperatures averaged 1.18 degrees C warmer than the 20th-century average, pressing countries from across the globe to move their economies away from traditional energy sources.

The worldwide target is for our renewables production to reach at least 11,000 GW by 2030.

This global push for us all to become more sustainable, means the renewables sector is one of the most vibrant and rapidly growing. While we’ve still some way to go (fossil fuels which account for 90% of carbon dioxide emissions, still make up more than 80% of our global energy production), according to statistics from the United Nations, cleaner energy sources are gaining ground. Approximately 29% of our electricity now comes from renewable sources. And it’s predicted that our global renewables sector will be worth in excess of a staggering two trillion US dollars by 2030.

In 2023, renewable energy represented 44% of all electricity consumed in Europe, a significant increase from previous years. And in the United States, data for the same year indicates that approximately 22% of all electricity was generated from renewable sources. This upward trajectory is expected to continue as more investments are made in clean energy technologies and infrastructure.

A combination of forward-thinking, green-focussed governmental policies, increasing public awareness about environmental issues, and the urgent global need to address climate change means the renewable energy market is on the up. And whilst positive for our planet, this does mean fierce competition for companies within the space. There’s an ongoing battle for pole position when it comes to innovation, market share, and, of course, the best talent.

Fossil fuels which account for 90% of carbon dioxide emissions, still make up more than 80% of our global energy production

UNITED NATIONSStatistics from the United Nations

Employer Branding for Attracting and Retaining Talent

If you’re keen to attract and retain the very best renewables talent, one key component is employer branding.
Employer branding refers to a company’s reputation as an employer and its value proposition to employees (as opposed to its brand image as perceived by consumers). In an industry where innovation and skilled personnel are critical to success, establishing a strong employer brand can significantly enhance a company’s ability to attract the brightest minds passionate about contributing to the green energy revolution. And let’s not forget that an attractive employer brand is also crucial for retaining talent, reducing turnover rates, and ensuring a motivated workforce that’s committed to achieving your company’s vision.
In short, effective employer branding encapsulates the ethos of your company, your commitment to sustainability, and your role in shaping a better future. It’s an indispensable tool in the battle for talent in the renewable energy sector.

Purpose of this Report

In this report, we’ll take a deep dive into the critical role that employer branding plays in the success of renewable energy companies.
By combining comprehensive analysis, illustrative case studies, and strategic recommendations, we hope to provide renewable energy firms with actionable insights on how to create and implement effective employer branding strategies.
We’ll examine the current landscape of the renewable energy sector, the significance of employer branding in attracting and retaining top talent, and the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.
Through this exploration, we aim to equip renewable energy companies, like yours, with the knowledge and tools required to manage the complexities of the market, enhance your appeal to potential employees, and secure a competitive edge when it comes to both sustainability and innovation.
And of course, if you’d like to discuss any of the subjects covered and the implications for your organisation, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our sector/market experts at Spencer Ogden.

we aim to equip renewable energy companies, like yours, with the knowledge and tools required to manage the complexities of the market, enhance your appeal to potential employees, and secure a competitive edge when it comes to both sustainability and innovation.

Strategies for Employer Branding in the Renewable Energy Sector

It’s more important than ever to stand out in the competitive world of renewables. Want to stay ahead? Then it’s vital you’re going beyond the basics of employer branding. You don’t need us to tell you that an attractive employer brand is critical – not just for attracting top talent – but also for keeping hold of them for the long term. And especially in a sector experiencing continuous technological advancements and evolving regulations.

Did you know that 75% of jobseekers consider a business’ employer brand before even applying? And companies with a well-established employer brand experience 50% more qualified applicants? Additionally, research from LinkedIn has shown that strong employer branding can reduce employee turnover rates by 28%. Stats like these underscore the undeniable impact of an attractive employer brand on recruitment and retention metrics.

Key Components of Employer Branding

So what does going beyond the basics look like? Here are some points to consider.


Employer Value Proposition (EVP): Your EVP should evolve to reflect more than your company’s culture and benefits. It needs to cover your commitment to sustainability, innovation, and social responsibility too because these are all key drivers for people working in the renewable energy sector. It’s so important to highlight your company’s role in pioneering clean energy solutions so that you’re aligning your EVP with the values of those environmentally conscious professionals you hope to attract.

Data-Led Communication Strategy: Are data analytics at the heart of your comms strategy? In short, they need to be. By using insights from employee satisfaction surveys, social media, and industry benchmarks you’ll be able to create messages that resonate well with your target audience. Talk about cutting-edge projects and thought leadership through webinars, whitepapers, and industry conferences because this kind of activity will also help to position your company as a credible industry leader.

Enhanced Employee Experience: Investing in advanced employee development programs (think emerging areas like smart grids and AI-driven energy management systems) is a great way to enhance your employee experience and satisfaction levels. Additionally, building a culture of innovation and encouraging cross-functional collaboration are tactics guaranteed to make your organisation a magnet for top-tier talent.

Empowered Brand Ambassadors: Encourage employees to participate in industry forums, contribute to academic journals, and speak at conferences as this can improve your employer brand. Why not try implementing an ambassador program that recognises and rewards employees for their efforts?

Stand out with Innovation

Innovation’s key if you’re looking to become an employer of choice for top renewables talent. Think about creating an exciting, dynamic working environment that promotes and encourages flexible working arrangements. That way, you’ll attract people who value work-life balance and autonomy. Collaborative, eco-friendly office spaces will reflect your commitment to sustainability too.

Then there’s AI. If you’re not using AI and ML to streamline your recruitment processes, you’re missing a trick. AI’s now well known for helping organisations to attract better candidates quicker, and improve the quality of hires – importantly individuals who align with your vision, mission, and values.

Diversity and inclusion are also important factors in strengthening your employer brand. If you haven’t already, make DE&I programs a priority and promote your commitment and progress to build trust and attract diverse candidates.

Remember, the key to building a leading employer brand is going above and beyond! Take some time to think outside the box.

Challenges and Opportunities for Renewable Energy Companies

Renewable energy companies in APAC face some unique challenges and opportunities in employer branding.
Challenges can include:


Skill Gaps: The rapid growth of the renewable energy sector has led to a significant skills gap, making it challenging to find talent with the right technical skills and knowledge. For instance, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) reported that the wind industry alone would need to train over 480,000 more people in GWO (Global Wind Organisation) standards by 2025 to keep up with installation forecasts across the globe.

Misconceptions about the Industry: Potential employees may have misconceptions about the renewable energy sector connected to job stability and career progression opportunities.

Competition from Established Sectors: Renewable energy companies often compete with well-established sectors (like oil and gas) for talent, which may offer higher salaries or more perceived prestige.

Looking also at opportunities, they include:


Purpose-Driven Attraction: Many professionals, especially millennials and Gen Z, are increasingly looking for meaningful roles that contribute to a sustainable future. Most renewable energy companies are going to provide this.

Innovation and Growth: The renewable energy sector is highly innovative and the potential for growth is significant. These are both highly attractive to forward-thinking and ambitious candidates.

Global Impact: The opportunity to contribute to global sustainability efforts and combat climate change can be a powerful component of an employer’s EVP.

The Impact of Employer Branding on Business Success

Employer branding can have a big impact on business success – especially within renewables. Did you know that 75% of candidates consider an employer’s brand before even applying for a job? And a strong employer brand can:

Attract Top Talent: By clearly articulating your mission, culture, and opportunities for growth/development, renewable energy firms can attract candidates who aren’t just skilled but who are also passionate about their role in sustainable energy solutions

Reduce Hiring Costs: A strong employer brand can make hiring quicker and easier, reducing the time and resource needed to find candidate. Research suggests this could equate to as much as a 50% reduction in the cost per hire.

Enhance Employee Retention: When employees’ values align with their company’s (and they feel engaged and valued) retention rates will improve. And in the competitive renewables sector, this is particularly important.

Drive Business Performance: Engaged and motivated employees are more productive and innovative. This will directly contribute to the company’s performance and help to achieve sustainability goals.

Importance of Employer Branding

The renewable energy sector in North America and Europe is expanding at an impressive speed. In North America, the market size was valued at US$ 315.17 billion in 2023 and by the end of 2024, the U.S. Energy Information Administration projects renewable deployment to grow by 17% to 42 GW, accounting for almost a quarter of electricity generation.
Europe’s also making significant strides. A record 60% of Europe’s electricity was powered by clean energy sources in the first two months of 2024. The region continues to increase its share of renewables, with strong year-on-year growth in clean power sources.
The result? Employers are now in a race to both attract and retain skilled professionals, making employer branding an essential component of their HR strategy.

Energy Generation


of Europe's electricity comes from clean energy sources


projected renewable projects growth in US

Cultural and Demographic Factors Influencing Employer Brand

Cultural and demographic factors play a massive role in shaping employer brand perception. The renewables workforce is incredibly diverse, and comprises various cultures, languages, and generational differences, each with distinct values and expectations from their employers. For example, this article from Standard, suggests that when it comes to different age groups:

Baby Boomers – are preparing for retirement and as such pension contributions, investments, and post-work health care benefits (i.e. dental plans) are priorities.

Generation X – concerned with family responsibilities and financial stresses, this group have dependents, meaning that insurance (critical illness, accident cover, etc.) is important. Also high on the list of priorities are things like paid sick days, well-being initiatives, and flexible working schedules.

Millennials – this group cares about work-from-home days, flexibility, and paid sick days. Interestingly, Millennials are less likely to know less about their workplace benefits than their older colleagues. And are a difficult age group to retain with their average tenure in any one role being 2 years and 9 months – much lower than their older counterparts.

Generation Z – According to the same article, Gen Z workers are a financially cautious group. They witnessed adult family members lose jobs during the pandemic and subsequent recession and as such are hard working and independent. The most attractive benefits for this group include virtual mental health counselling, financial counselling, loan payment aid and health and wellbeing support. They also care about progression and training opportunities.

When considering the other wide-ranging demographics, alongside age, there’s a potentially endless range of factors affecting what employees value and seek in an employer.

Top Tip: So how can you better understand what your employees expect from your brand? What will make them feel valued, loyal, and satisfied? Polls and surveys are a great place to start. They’re fantastic tools for understanding cultural and demographic distinctions.

Top Tip:
Consider regularly conducting employee engagement surveys and external brand perception polls to provide your renewable energy company with valuable insights into what different segments of the talent market value. These insights will then help to inform a targeted employer branding strategy that addresses the specific preferences and expectations of diverse talent pools.

Key Strategies for Building a Strong Employer Brand

A compelling Employer Value Proposition (EVP) forms the foundation of a strong employer brand. It will lay out what the company offers to its employees in return for their skills, capabilities, and experiences.

On top of this, a well-defined EVP will always align with the organisation’s mission, values, and culture, and promise a unique and attractive experience to potential and current employees. According to Gartner, organisations that effectively deliver on their EVP can decrease annual employee turnover by just under 70% and increase new hire commitment by nearly 30%.
So, how do you develop a strong employer brand? Here are a few suggestions for how to get started:

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Initiatives
Nowadays, candidates (and particularly those in renewables) are increasingly looking for employers who demonstrate social responsibility and a commitment to sustainability. Integrating CSR initiatives into your employer brand can significantly make your organisation more appealing, especially in the renewable energy sector where sustainability is central to business operations.
Consider that a huge 93% of employees believe that companies must lead with purpose. One way to demonstrate this is through actively participating in social responsibility and sustainability initiatives. Think investments in green technology, community engagement projects, or working towards ambitious sustainability goals – all of which can showcase your company as an employer that cares about global issues, attracting like-minded talent.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Practices
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) practices aren’t just important morally, but also strategically. A diverse workforce is proven to encourage innovation, creativity, and resilience – all essential qualities for success in the dynamic renewable energy sector. McKinsey’s report, “Diversity wins: How inclusion matters,” shows that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 25% more likely to have above-average profitability than companies in the fourth quartile.
This shows that promoting your DEI efforts in recruitment materials, on social media, and through internal communications can strengthen your employer brand. It’s about showcasing your commitment to creating a welcoming and supportive workplace for all.

Career Development and Learning Opportunities
Career development and continuous learning opportunities are key in achieving employee satisfaction and retention. LinkedIn’s 2019 Workforce Learning Report revealed that 94% of employees would stay at a company longer if it invested in their learning and development.
Renewable energy companies can attract and retain top talent by emphasising their commitment to professional growth, and through offering training programs, mentorship, and clear pathways for career progression within the organisation.

Technology and Digital Platforms for Employer Branding
In our digital age, online platforms have become critical for effective employer branding. A strong online presence on platforms like LinkedIn, Glassdoor, and Indeed (and also as well as on social media channels) can help renewable energy companies reach a broader audience.
Sharing content that highlights your company culture, CSR initiatives, DEI efforts, and employee success stories is more likely to engage potential candidates and help to build a positive employer brand. Using tech for improving recruitment practices – think virtual reality workplace tours or AI-driven job matching – can further differentiate your brand in the competitive renewables job market.

Organisations that effectively deliver on their EVP can decrease annual employee turnover by just under 70% and increase new hire commitment by nearly 30%.


Case Studies

There are some great real-life examples of companies putting successful employer branding initiatives in action. Each of the following examples demonstrates how you can promote your contributions to sustainability and renewable energy initiatives and use them to elevate your own employer branding strategy.

NextEra Energy (North America)

Overview: NextEra Energy has HQs in Florida, USA. It’s one of the world’s biggest producers of wind and solar energy, and has a strong commitment to sustainability and renewable energy. You may be familiar with its significant investments in clean energy technologies.
Strategy: What’s NextEra doing well when it comes to employer branding? Well, its strategy focuses on its being a leader in the renewable energy sector . And on the fact it’s dedicated to creating a sustainable future. The company emphasises how it’s advancing clean energy by being transparent in sharing corporate social responsibility reports and employee stories that showcase its innovative projects.
Impact: By shouting about its leadership in renewable energy, NextEra attracts talent that are passionate about working in an industry that’s having such a positive impact on the environment. The business’ focus on sustainability has clearly enhanced their reputation as an employer that’s committed to addressing climate change. And that makes them an attractive choice for professionals working in the clean energy sector.

Ørsted (UK)

Overview: Ørsted, originally a Danish company, but with significant operations in the UK, is a global leader in offshore wind energy. The company has been on a journey, transitioning from fossil fuels to renewable energy. And becoming a major player in the UK’s green energy landscape in the process.
Strategy: Ørsted’s employer branding strategy focuses on its transformation and how it’s gone from being a traditional energy company to a frontrunner in renewables. The company communicates this really well through its sustainability reports, public engagements, and recruitment campaigns – all of which highlight its commitment to innovation and environmental stewardship.
Impact: Ørsted’s strong emphasis on renewable energy and sustainability attracts top talent in (and to) the UK who are eager to be part of a company that’s driving the green energy transition. Their successful employer branding strategy has most definitely played a major part in elevating their reputation as an innovative and socially responsible employer. And that’s resulted in them securing a diverse pool of skilled professionals.

Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (Europe)

Overview: Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, headquartered in Spain, is a global leader in the wind power industry, providing wind turbines and services worldwide. The company is deeply committed to sustainability and innovation in renewable energy.
Strategy: Siemens Gamesa’s employer branding strategy is based around cutting-edge technology and sustainability. The company uses various channels, including corporate social responsibility reports, recruitment ads, and industry events, to communicate its mission of driving the global energy transition.
Impact: Siemens Gamesa’s emphasis on innovation and sustainability attracts talented individuals who are passionate about contributing to the renewable energy sector. Their reputation as an industry leader in wind energy and their commitment to a sustainable future make them a particularly appealing employer for professionals across Europe.


Overcoming Challenges and Mitigating Risks

Overcoming challenges and mitigating risks associated with employer branding, particularly within the renewable energy sector, means strategic foresight and adaptability.
Here are some strategies used by companies across the globe to address these issues. They’re also supported by some real-life examples and stats.


Addressing Skills Shortages and Talent Gaps

As we’ve identified, the renewable energy sector is rapidly growing, and that leads to a significant demand for skilled professionals. Companies are continuously working towards finding innovative ways to bridge this talent gap.
Example: Enel Green Power, a global leader in renewable energy, addresses the skills shortage through specialised training programs. The Enel Green Power Academy offers specialised courses on solar and wind energy technologies, aiming to equip a new generation of workers with the necessary skills for the industry.
Top tip: Investing in training and development programs not only helps fill immediate skill gaps but also builds a pipeline of qualified candidates for the future. Partnerships with universities and technical institutes can also be beneficial.


Navigating Regulatory and Policy Changes

The renewable energy sector’s heavily influenced by government policies and regulations but they can frequently change due to political climates and economic priorities. Staying ahead of these changes is crucial for businesses in this space.
Example: Vestas, a global energy company dedicated to wind energy, actively engages in policy advocacy, and works closely with governments and regulatory bodies. This proactive approach ensures that they aren’t just compliant with current regulations but also positioned to influence future policy developments.
Top tip: Establishing a dedicated regulatory affairs team can help in monitoring policy changes, discussions with policymakers, and adjusting strategies accordingly. Engagement in industry associations can also provide insights and collective advocacy opportunities.


Managing Reputation Risks and Brand Perception

Information now spreads rapidly online, and managing reputation risks and brand perception is more important than ever. Negative publicity, whether justified or not, can have a lasting impact on employer brand.
Example: Iberdrola, a Spanish multinational electric utility company, focusing on renewable energy, has been recognised for its sustainability initiatives and effective communication strategies. Iberdrola is even included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index, proof of its commitment to sustainability and its employer brand. 
Top tip: Regularly monitoring comms, including social media and online platforms, for mentions of your company can help identify potential reputation risks early. Establishing a crisis communication plan and training spokespersons can ensure that the company responds effectively to any negative publicity. Transparency and proactive communication about your company’s practices, especially concerning sustainability efforts, can enhance brand perception.

Future Outlook and Recommendations

So what’s the outlook for renewables? Well, it’s clearly at the forefront of addressing global challenges such as climate change and sustainable development. And as this industry continues to evolve, so too will the strategies for building and maintaining a strong employer brand.
Let’s look at some of the emerging trends as well as our recommendations for renewable energy companies focusing on employer branding:


In conclusion, as the renewable energy sector continues to grow, companies that are innovative in creating their employer branding strategies will be in the strongest position to attract and retain top talent.
If you’re keen to be a magnet for the brightest minds in the renewables sector, be sure to consider the advice in this document. A genuine interest and commitment to sustainability can help, as well as embracing the latest technological advancements and considering the diverse needs and priorities of employees when it comes to offering attractive benefits packages.
Collaborative efforts and a commitment to continuous improvement will further enhance your ability to meet the evolving expectations of today’s renewables workforce.
Becoming an employer of choice in the renewables energy sector is not something to work on alone. It calls for collaboration – and it’s time to make sharing knowledge, resources, and best practices the norm. It’s also about creating ecosystems that thrive on innovation, inclusivity, and sustainability. And as companies commit to this approach of continuous improvement and collaboration, they not only elevate their own brands but also contribute significantly to advancing the entire sector.
If you’re ready to align your employer branding strategies with values surrounding sustainability and responsibility, you’ll resonate more deeply with prospective employees who are not just looking for a job, but also a purpose and a platform to make a real difference.

If you found the content of this report useful, why not talk to an industry expert at Spencer Ogden about your own recruitment strategy for hiring in the renewables sector? We’re here to help you create a vibrant and dynamic workplace culture to attract and retain the very best renewables talent.

About Spencer Ogden

As global recruitment experts in energy and infrastructure Spencer Ogden is continuously working to create careers to power a sustainable future for our clients and candidates.

With technology at the heart of the process, from financing to operational execution, we break new ground at every stage of the project life cycle. And it’s our mission to create a dynamic and sustainable legacy in the ever-changing landscapes we cover.

If you are in renewables or are an energy business looking to transition to a more sustainable strategy, we can help. Whether you need contract or permanent expertise to help on your journey to becoming a greener organisation, we lead the market when it comes to placing talent where it’s needed. We are deeply embedded within renewables and are passionate about making a difference today, for tomorrow.

Contact us to discuss your sustainable energy needs and how we can support you on your journey.