There are lots of reasons to consider implementing sustainable practices in your business. Not only is it good for the environment, but it can reduce overheads in the form of energy costs, improve the health and satisfaction of your staff, and attract customers looking to do business with likeminded brands. Here are some simple changes that will make your office more eco-friendly and efficient.
Encourage green commuting
As commutes get longer, our daily journeys to and from work are having a serious impact on the environment. Transport (excluding aviation) accounts for 28% of UK carbon dioxide emissions. Companies can encourage employees to lower commuting emissions by walking, biking, carpooling, or taking public transit to the office, and offering incentives to do so. The hybrid system of partly working from home, due to Covid over the last 18 months, has had a positive impact on emissions.
Many organisations are well on their way to becoming paperless, but for some businesses, cutting out paper completely isn’t an option. If this is the case, make sure you recycle all paper and change the settings on your network so that paper is printed on both sides. If your company data is sensitive, look for a shredding company that offers a service where the paper is recycled once the information has been destroyed, or invest in a shredder for your business.
Reducing the electricity bill is not only good for the environment, it’s good for your profitability. Make sure your office temperature is the right balance of comfort and cost, by setting the thermostat a few degrees lower in winter and a few degrees higher in summer. Switching off TVs, lights and equipment when they’re not being used and disable screen saver is a quick and effective solution. Computers screens should go to sleep when they’re not in use, and turning down the brightness setting on your computer screen to a level that’s both comfortable and energy efficient, is again an easy win.
Maximise natural light
Employees working near sunlit windows have a 15% higher production rate. Natural light sets the body’s circadian rhythms, which control awakening, falling asleep, synthesising vitamin D and digestion. Indoor light, however, is a major disrupter, so if possible, move workstations to within 25 feet of peripheral walls with windows.
Relying more on natural light when possible also saves energy. Also consider installing a smart power strip at every workstation, replacing all lighting fixtures with LEDs, as well as incorporating sensors and timers for office lighting, means you will reduce energy consumption and costs on things like utility bills.
Re-use & Recycle
Recycling is one of the easiest ways to make your office more environmentally friendly. Simply set up recycling bins around the office, with dedicated bins for glass, paper and plastics. Electronic waste such as old monitors, printers, computers and cables can also be recycled, and if your coffee machine uses pods, recycle your capsules to avoid adding to the landfill toll.
Eliminate single use cups
Lots of offices have break rooms or cafeterias with water and coffee. While that is a positive perk for employees, it is harmful to the environment if they use plastic or Styrofoam cups. Plastic and Styrofoam cups are not biodegradable can spend years in landfills or make their way into our oceans and rivers. Try carrying around a reusable bottle or thermos for your water or coffee. You are more likely to stay hydrated and will feel good knowing you are helping the environment.
For further information on how to make your office more eco-friendly and efficient and for all your office furniture requirements, please contact us here.