Our young people will have to live in the future we create. They will drive the change needed to build sustainable economies. This is why investing in young talent is investing in sustainability
Sustainability has rightly become one of the hot topics of our time. However, sustainability is usually considered a business and environmental concern, overlooking another critical factor: human sustainability. Employees with deep experience and expert knowledge are critical to every company as they shape, mould and forge strong business relations and good business practises, but to make our human resources sustainable, we also need to invest in the future – our young talent.
The youth are less burdened by the legacy of the past, and naturally inclined towards new approaches. They are inherently innovative – not because they feel compelled to change, but because new approaches make more sense to them.
The youth will eventually help us redefine our approach to sustainability itself, to build a world where we no longer look to simply sustain ecosystems and resources, but to regenerate – to put back more than we take out.
This is what inspires us at CHEP, where we pride ourselves on being one of the world’s most sustainable businesses. With our “share and reuse” business model, we move more goods to more people in more places than any other organisation. But business inputs are not just about finance and resources. They are overwhelmingly human – including social, relationship and intellectual capital.
In this context, youth development is key. Developing knowledge, skills and experience among our young people will serve us for decades. Young people are also generally more passionate about sustainability, since they have a stake in the future.
At CHEP, we cater for this by providing study bursaries for talented students in the accounting, business management, supply chain and logistics fields. We develop leadership potential through our graduate program, where candidates are screened and assessed with the aim to identify two successful graduates to spend two years with the company. During these two years, the graduates rotate through various strategic business areas within CHEP, obtaining valuable business experience and potential full-time employment at CHEP. Our learnerships provide formal qualifications as well as workplace exposure in our CHEP, Weatherboard and Braecroft businesses for more than 100 learners every year. Our learnership program provides skills in IT, customer management, environmental management, production technology and electrical apprenticeships.
CHEP South Africa is also a proud sponsor of the Enactus South Africa National Competition showcasing student social entrepreneurship projects. The University of KwaZulu-Natal team is the reigning SA champion and will compete against 27 countries at the Enactus World Cup in October.
Such events confirm that our younger generation has a head for business and a heart for the world, unafraid to take on real socio-economic issues and find sustainable solutions. They truly are looking to change the world.
UN Sustainable Development Goals Target 4.7 is that by 2030, all learners should acquire the knowledge and skills to promote sustainable development. To make this real, as part of our 2025 Vision CHEP has committed to advocating, educating and encouraging people become circular economy change makers. We’re also adjusting our capital-accounting methods to better measure our natural- and social-capital impacts and our progress towards our 2025 targets.
We hope that these transformed systems will be our legacy for the youth, to help guide change to a more sustainable, regenerative future – in supply chains, and in the many adjacent industries we interact with.
In South Africa the youth have consistently helped to drive change for our society to remain sustainable.
At CHEP we value inclusivity and diversity. Our multi-generational workforce is a key cornerstone of this belief, with long-serving colleagues finding solutions from experience, and younger team members providing energy, enthusiasm and the courage to challenge old ways of working.
It will also be young people who drive the move to more sustainable economies, to restore nature, to tackle climate change and to create shared social value. We are committed to supporting this vision, and to making positive impacts beyond our business for the benefit of future generations.
CHEP helps move more goods to more people, in more places than any other organisation on earth. Its pallets, crates and containers form the invisible backbone of the global supply chain and the world’s biggest brands trust CHEP to help them transport their goods more efficiently, sustainably and safely. As pioneers of the sharing economy, CHEP created one of the world's most sustainable logistics businesses through the share and reuse of its platforms under a model known as ‘pooling’. CHEP primarily serves the fast-moving consumer goods (e.g. dry food, grocery, and health and personal care), fresh produce, beverage, retail and general manufacturing industries.
CHEP is part of the Brambles Group and operates in approximately 60 countries. For more information on CHEP, visit http://www.chep.com