There are several very simple ways to make your office greener without spending a great deal of money or having to make huge changes to the way your office already operates.
The chances are, the majority of your staff are already quite ‘green’ at home so they will be more than happy to accommodate the idea of being more green in the workplace too. Others who are perhaps less environmentally conscious may well get on board and make changes to the way they do things at home too!
Simple Ideas for a Greener Office
- Use a composting bin to collect all of the compostable kitchen waste including fruit, coffee grounds, teabags and other suitable food waste.
- Find out if it is possible to have milk delivered to the office in reusable bottles.
- Use fair-trade coffee, tea, sugar and so on in the workplace.
- Use environmentally friendly cleaning products and refill bottles rather than purchasing new ones. There are several excellent products to choose from so switch the washing up liquid, surface cleaners, toilet cleaner and soaps you currently use for more environmentally friendly, natural alternatives.
- Use recycling bins in the workplace to store and recycle all of your glass, plastic, metal and paper waste.
- Encourage your staff to car share. Even if they only do it once a week they will immediately reduce their car usage by 20% (assuming they work a 5 day week). That is quite a difference!
- Encourage staff to ditch the car and walk, cycle, or use their car to commute to and from work. (Again, even if they just did this once a week, this would make a huge difference to their carbon footprint collectively).
- Look into the viability of permitting some staff members to telecommute and work remotely from home one or two days a week. This kind of arrangement can have real advantages for both employer and employee, reduces travel and happier staff work harder for their employees!
- The technology we have available to us these days makes it easier to set up and manage conference calls, also reducing the need to travel and the time spent doing so.
- Look into the possibility of having products, materials, stock and so on delivered in bulk to reduce the quantity of deliveries that are required. As well as reducing the impact on the environment you may also be able to negotiate attractive discounts for purchasing in bulk.
- Refrain from printing anything unnecessarily and add a message to your businesses email signature encouraging others to do the same.
- Encourage everyone to switch lights off when they are leaving rooms or perhaps install PIR sensors in communal office spaces with a timer so that they switch off automatically when not required. These are especially useful in hallways, toilets and kitchen areas as people are more likely to forget to turn the lights off when leaving these areas.
- Switch to low energy, LED, or fluorescent tube lights to cut your energy consumption. A 50 watt halogen bulb uses 50 watts of electricity per hour, whereas an equivalent LED bulb would provide you with the same light output whilst using just 4 to 5 watts. Reducing the energy consumption of your lighting alone has a massive impact on your energy costs.
- Could you afford to invest in a solar energy system to reduce your dependence on the energy companies, reduce your carbon print and cut energy bills in the long term?
- Avoid leaving computers and other electrical appliances on standby. If they are not in use, switch them off!
Benefits of Going Green for Your Small Business and Employees
- Being able to convey that your business genuinely cares about the environment and has taken steps to become greener is good for PR and makes your business more attractive to many clients and customers who could well choose you over your competitors due to your green policies.
- As a green business you may find that you have a greater appeal to potential employees and attract the type of individuals who will become a real asset to your business.
- There are numerous economic benefits that will soon outweigh any outlay. Making some of the changes described above will help your business to cut bills and energy costs, making a significant difference to your annual energy bills.
- You will have happier, healthier employees, (particularly the ones who choose to walk or cycle to work). Happier employees are more productive and healthier employees take less time off work! When a group of staff work together to make their office greener and feel motivated about this goal, you will notice a positive impact on the working environment.
With the exception of having a solar energy system installed, all of these ideas would be simple to implement and require a minimal outlay. There is no need to make a lot of changes in one go, you could simply choose one or two and implement others gradually, after all any step in the right direction is a positive one.
At Phoenix Compactors & Balers, we are experts in waste management and always ensure that we deliver you cost-effective solutions with our high standard balers and compactors. We are able to deliver to any location within the UK. There are numerous ways to make your office greener for 2014, these are just a few suggestions. Turn over a greener leaf in the New Year – the benefits are well worth it!