Unlock Potential: Green Talent for GCCs

Unlock Potential:
Green Talent for GCCs

By Arushi Bhattacharya
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May 2024

As global organizations continue to establish Global Capability Centers (GCCs) in India, there has been a noticeable rise in the demand for green skills. GCCs have transitioned to becoming centers of innovation, engineering, technology, and research and development. There is a shift towards sustainability and environmental responsibility as well. India’s GCCs are actively involved in cutting-edge initiatives like artificial intelligence, data analytics, and cloud computing, fostering a culture of innovation that benefits both the parent organization and the Indian economy.

In this article, we will explore the growing relevance and impact of green skills in India’s GCCs, the specific skills and roles in demand, as well as the future of green skills.

The India GCC story

India is currently home to over 1,580 GCCs, employing more than 1.6 million people. By 2030, GCCs are projected to grow to a value of a staggering $110 billion, according to a recent report by Zinnov. These centers have not only leveraged India's digitally adept talent pool, cost effectiveness, and favorable regulatory environment, but also a thriving startup ecosystem to become front and center of global operations, technology innovation and sustainability.

This growth trend signifies India's increasing prowess in attracting and nurturing a skilled workforce. GCCs expose the Indian workforce to international best practices and cutting-edge technologies, fostering overall talent development, and creating a more competitive workforce.

This evolution has also led to a significant focus on upskilling and reskilling the Indian workforce, contributing to the overall talent development and economic growth of the country.

The Green Shift

GCCs are at the forefront of driving their parent organizations' sustainability efforts. Their ability to scale and leverage offshore services, digitalization, and local talent, empowers them to significantly impact sustainability across the organization.

As per a recent report by the Economic Times, India is set to create 30 million green jobs across the country by 2050, working towards India's goal of achieving net zero emissions by 2070.

Research also suggests, over 50% of GCCs are already anchoring global ESG initiatives.

ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) considerations are now almost non-negotiable for enterprises, leading to the demand for professionals with green skills.

Green skills encompass knowledge, expertise, and values that empower individuals and organizations to adapt products, services, and processes to environmental challenges. This focus on sustainability fosters resource-efficient practices and effective utilization of green technologies within corporations, ultimately enabling environmentally responsible decision-making.

GCCs are actively involved in sustainability initiatives using technology, innovation, and consulting services. Some examples include Mahindra & Mahindra, which is developing sustainable mobility solutions and electric vehicles. Walmart Global Technology (previously Walmart Labs) is another example. They leverage IoT sensors to monitor energy use and optimize temperature control in their vast network of stores across the US.

Recent insights by the Economic Times highlights the specific green skills currently in high demand for GCCs in India, such as ESG reporting, data management and analytics for sustainability, and climate risk modeling. This focus on green skills ensures GCCs are well-positioned for the future.

Balancing Sustainability with Business Priorities

By anchoring global ESG initiatives and implementing a centralized approach with a strong governance structure, GCCs can ensure seamless integration and alignment with the global strategy. The need for sustainability does not have to conflict with other business priorities such as cost efficiency and productivity. Partner collaborations with research organizations and universities, as well as investments in sustainable technologies, are essential. Stakeholder engagement and employee upskilling in green skills are also critical to balancing sustainability with other business goals.

Having a workforce with green skills can contribute to a positive brand image for GCCs. Companies that demonstrate a commitment to sustainability and offer eco-friendly products or services will attract quality talent. Talent that is looking for an employer to add value not just to them but to the environment at large. Also, the employability prospects of individuals with eco skills are significantly higher in today's job market.

What the Future Holds

GCCs investing in green skills development and integrating sustainability into their core operations, are driving positive change, and making a lasting impact on the global stage. They contribute to their parent organizations' sustainability goals while positioning themselves as principals of environmental responsibility.

The future doesn’t offer green skills as a choice, it’s already an industry imperative, driven by the urgent need for sustainable development. According to a report by the International Labour Organization, the global transition to a green economy will create 24 million new jobs by 2030. Both developed and emerging economies will experience a growing demand for professionals with green skills, presenting opportunities for innovation and environmental problem-solving. Organizations and employees must both prioritize investments in green skills development to remain relevant and competitive in a rapidly evolving global landscape.

Building a Future-Proof Green Workforce

The demand for green skills is surging across industries, and Indian GCCs are at the forefront of this exciting transition. But building a green workforce requires a strategic approach.

To continue this conversation and determine how we can help you build a greener workforce, contact me today.