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Sustainability manager

A sustainability manager oversees the implementation of sustainability strategies during a construction project. This usually relates to the environmental impacts of the work being carried out, to ensure that the project adheres to the most economically and environmentally friendly methods possible.

Average salary*

£25000

-

£60000

Typical hours per week

40 - 42

How to become a sustainability manager

There are several routes to becoming a sustainability manager. For this position you will usually be expected to have a university degree, however you could also complete a college course, an apprenticeship, or apply directly to an employer if you have relevant experience.  

You should explore these routes to find out which is the right one for you. Although some of these options have certain qualification requirements, many employers are more interested in people who are enthusiastic, willing to learn and can follow instructions.

You may need a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card to work on a construction site.

University

Most sustainability manager roles will require a BSc honours degree or equivalent in a subject such as

  • Environmental sciences
  • Environmental studies
  • Surveying
  • Engineering
  • Construction. 

You’ll need 2 - 3 A Levels, or equivalent for an undergraduate degree. 

Some employers may also ask for a postgraduate qualification in a related subject.

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a university course

> Funding advice

College/training provider

You could complete a college course to help you become a sustainability manager, such as engineering, construction or sustainability.

Each course will have specific entry requirements, but you’ll generally require a minimum of 4 - 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent.

> Equivalent entry requirements explained

> Find a course near you

> Funding advice

Apprenticeship

You could complete an environmental practitioner degree apprenticeship to help you become a sustainability manager.

You'll usually need 4 - 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a degree apprenticeship.

Apprenticeships are open to anyone over the age of 16. As an apprentice, you’ll be fully employed by your company and expected to work a minimum of 30 hours a week. Your time will be split between on-the-job experience and a college or training provider.

> Find an apprenticeship near you

> Guide to apprenticeships

Work

Experience is often important in securing a role as a sustainability manager, so applicants with an in-depth knowledge of logistics, low or zero-carbon technology, or understanding of building regulations may be able to apply to an employer directly for work, even if they do not hold relevant qualifications.

Work experience

Work experience, or volunteering, is a great way to help with gaining employment within the construction industry. You could gain this at school, or by working weekends and holidays with a company or relative who works as a sustainability manager. Potential employers will always be pleased to see work experience listed on your CV.

You can also gain experience by volunteering for an environmental charity, applying for internships or studying towards a qualification that includes industry experience. 

> Find out more about work experience

Skills 

Additional skills which may benefit anyone considering a job as a sustainability manager include: 

  • Maths knowledge
  • Analytical thinking skills
  • Knowledge of geography
  • Excellent verbal communication skills
  • Good attention to detail
  • Excellent written communication skills
  • Ambition and a desire to succeed.

What does a sustainability manager do?

As a sustainability manager, you will be responsible for managing and overseeing environmental and sustainability issues surrounding construction projects. 

The role of a sustainability manager involves the following duties: 

  • Undertaking Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology (BREEAM) and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) assessments
  • Completing sustainability plans
  • Conducting site assessments and producing reports on findings
  • Initiating renewable energy assessments
  • Advising on the latest low or zero-carbon technologies
  • Organising and chairing meetings
  • Communicating plans to project teams and senior staff.

How much could you earn as a sustainability manager?

The expected salary for a sustainability manager varies as you become more experienced.

  • Newly trained sustainability managers can earn £25,000 - £30,000
  • Trained sustainability managers with some experience can earn £30,000 - £45,000
  • Senior sustainability managers can earn £45,000 - £60,000.*

Hours and salary depend on location, employer and any overtime you may do.

* Salaries have been collected from multiple industry sources and have been updated as of 2019


Jobs

Check out the latest sustainability manager vacancies: 

As these are external websites, the number of vacancies related to your preferred role may vary. New opportunities will be posted as they come up.

Career path and progression

As a sustainability manager, you could transfer your skills to a role such as an SHEQ (safety, health, environment and quality) advisor, or progress to a more senior position and earn a higher salary.

Progression Opportunities

Explore the progression opportunities below

  • Current role Sustainability manager Sustainability managers/co-ordinators oversee the implementation of sustainabili...
    Read more
  • Current role Sustainability specialist Sustainability specialists are concerned with environmental impacts, and also th...
    Read more
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