Manage sustainability in the workplace


This unit of competency describes the outcomes required to design and manage approaches to sustainability, including the development and implementation of sustainability policies across a range of forest and wood products industry workplaces and operations of all sizes.

The unit applies to job roles including Forest/Timber Harvester, Forest Planner, Forest Sustainability Manager, Forestry Manager, General Manager, Plantation Manager, Sustainability Manager, Technical Forester and Technical Services Manager.

No licensing, legislative, regulatory, or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements describe the essential outcomes.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the range of conditions.

1. Evaluate workplace sustainability requirements

1.1 Assess existing organisational policies and procedures for sustainability.

1.2 Conduct research to define scope of organisational sustainability requirements.

1.3 Consult stakeholders as a key component of the research process.

1.4 Document recommendations based on research outcomes and provide feedback to appropriate personnel and stakeholders.

2. Design policy

2.1 Design policy that reflects organisational commitment to sustainability as an integral part of business planning.

2.2 Develop and circulate draft policy to stakeholders and appropriate personnel for feedback.

2.3 Review and revise policy, based on feedback.

2.4 Agree, document and communicate appropriate strategies for implementation to stakeholders

3. Manage policy implementation

3.1 Establish timelines and budget for implementation.

3.2 Allocate resources to the implementation process, in line with timelines and budget.

3.3 Assign implementation responsibilities to appropriate personnel and advise expected outcomes.

3.4 Establish targets and indicators to maximise policy outcomes.

3.5 Establish processes to facilitate policy implementation.

4. Review policy

4.1 Evaluate changing trends and consider opportunities for improved workplace sustainability policy.

4.2 Monitor reports for feedback that supports continuous improvement of sustainability practices.

4.3 Regularly evaluate policy and modify to enhance sustainability practices.

Evidence of Performance

A person demonstrating competency in this unit must satisfy all of the elements, performance criteria and foundation skills of this unit, and must be able to provide evidence that they can:

Manage the policy development and implementation process for one of the following types of sustainability policies:




Produce a detailed written policy.

Determine, document and communicate key targets and performance indicators for the success of the sustainability policy.

Evidence of Knowledge

A person competent in this unit must be able to demonstrate knowledge of:

Purpose and key content of environmental or sustainability laws applicable to the forest and wood products industry and organisation.

Key content of current government and industry sustainability initiatives, codes of practice and guidelines.

Features, at an in-depth level of understanding, of different aspects of sustainability, including:




Impacts of forest and wood products industry production process on the environment and environmental protection practices, at an in-depth level of understanding, for:

reducing water and energy use

cleaning of plant, tools and equipment

disposing of, recycling and reusing timber and other waste

reducing use of toxic materials and hazardous chemicals

minimising resource use through changes in process, facility design and management.

Processes and practices for managing sustainability in the workplace, including:

internal and external consultation

gathering and responding to feedback

policy development

policy implementation

evaluating and modifying policy.

Format, content and use of policy documents.

Targets and performance indicators for effectiveness of sustainability practices and methods of communicating these to team members.

Methods to monitor and respond to organisational performance in managing sustainability.

Assessment Conditions

The following resources must be made available:

Computers, keyboards, printers and software used to prepare budgets, document policies and implementation plans.

Comprehensive information about the operation of a real or simulated business to determine sustainability management requirements.

Documents and proformas commonly used in the management of sustainability, such as:


record and data collection sheets

sustainability policies.

Competency is to be assessed in the workplace or a simulated environment that accurately reflects performance in a real workplace setting.

Assessor requirements

Assessors must:

Hold the appropriate assessor competency standards as outlined in regulations; and

be able to demonstrate vocational competencies at least to the level being assessed; and

be able to demonstrate how they are continuing to develop their VET knowledge and skills as well as maintaining their industry currency and assessor competence.

Foundation Skills

This section describes those core and employment skills that are essential to performance and are not explicit in the performance criteria.

Numeracy skills to:

Interpret and calculate complex numerical data to establish and manage budgets.

Oral communication skills to:

Hold high-level consultative discussions to generate ideas for and negotiate content of sustainability policies.

Reading skills to:

Interpret complex information in a range of internal and external source documents to plan organisational sustainability policy.

Writing skills to:

Develop and document comprehensive sustainability policies in a style and format easily understood by the full scope of organisational employees.

Planning and organising skills to:

Source, collect and organise a range of data to inform sustainability policies.

Plan and manage own timing and productivity to complete initial and amended policies, budgets and implementation plans.

Technology skills to:

Use a computer, keyboard and software to prepare policies, budgets and plans.