Skillnet Ireland, the national agency dedicated to the development of talent for Irish enterprise, sponsors the Sustainability Category of the Irish Times Innovation Awards. “We support 20,000 companies each year and becoming more sustainable is a key priority for many of them,” says Skillnet Ireland executive director Dave Flynn.
“Companies wishing to develop the skills required for their sustainability journeys should join one of our 72 Skillnet business networks across the country,” he adds. “Skillnet Business Networks consist of businesses within the same sector or region and with similar training needs. Their focus is to identify the skills needed to make your business more competitive. Companies can join the networks at no cost.”
He highlights Skillnet Ireland’s Climate Ready initiative, which is aimed at equipping businesses with the skills and knowledge required to thrive in the low-carbon economy. “We partnered with Central Solutions to develop the Climate Ready programme,” says Flynn. “They know the sustainability space very well. A huge amount of knowledge and skills are needed for businesses to deliver services in the most efficient way. We are trying to give businesses the tools to become more sustainable and create the new business models which will help them to open up new opportunities and win more customers.”
The Climate Ready Academy is a key feature of the programme. The programmes, training and supports offered by the academy are fully funded for Irish businesses and employees in the private sector.
“The Climate Ready programme also offers access to the Sustainability Pass,” says Flynn. “This is designed to support staff in all disciplines at all skill levels in understanding how their sustainable actions will play a vital role in the country’s collective response to climate change.”
The Sustainability Pass course, which takes 60-90 minutes to complete, helps develop sustainability awareness, knowledge and best practice across the workforce in key climate action topics including the impact of climate change on Irish businesses. It also delivers industry-developed learning to participants enabling them to support the business in achieving its environmental objectives. Participants gain Sustainability Pass certification on completion of the course.
“We are delighted to sponsor the Sustainability category and we hope this year’s winner Glasport Bio goes from strength to strength in future,” says Flynn.