More Business Greener than ever are striving to reduce the environmental impact of their offices. While you may not be able to make your office 100% sustainable, just a few small adjustments can help to lessen the footprint that your business leaves. With that in mind, here are six ways that you can adopt environmentally friendly practices across your business to make it greener.
1. Green Procurement
Do you know where your suppliers get the goods from? Have you checked out their green credentials? Spend some time researching how sustainable the businesses are that you have working relationships with. If you find that your usual supplier does not adhere to green practices, it is time to seek companies that do. Not only will you be lessening the environmental impact that your business makes and supporting companies that hold the same values and ethos as you, but you will also be making your business more attractive to potential customers.
During the summer months, offices are kept cool with air-conditioning, and during the winter months, the heating systems kick in to provide a thermally comfortable workspace for employees. Adjusting the thermostat by just a few degrees during both summer and winter can make a dramatic difference to energy consumption.
3. Maximize Natural Light
Research by the World Green Building Council has shown that employees who work near a natural light source perform 15% more productively. It may mean that the office needs to be reconfigured so that desks can be maneuvered to better positions but relying on natural light will also reduce energy costs. Install timers on the office lighting to ensure that it is only on during office hours.
Printing is an integral and necessary part of most businesses and can make a significant impact on green office credentials. Use recycled paper for in-house documents and save the premium paper for customers and clients. Purchase used and refurbished office equipment, such as refurbished color laser printers, rather than purchasing brand new equipment.
Technology has revolutionized business practices. It feels counterintuitive to use technology to be greener, but it enables people to work more efficiently and greener. Technology can be used to reduce a business’s environmental impact by lessening the need for face-to-face meetings. Skype and other similar software allow companies to reduce the need for travel. Similarly, cloud computing provides the ability for co-workers to collaborate on work without the need to be physically near each other.
6. Food and Drink
Employees are often guilty of using convenience food and drink during the working day. According to Nation Master Statistics, North Americans create more garbage than any other nation. Coffee machines that use single-cup coffee pods and single-use food containers are just some of the items that can impact the environment. By providing employees with a kitchen area, you can encourage them to bring food in from home, provide containers for condiments for everyone to use, and encourage people to use refillable water bottles.
Being a greener business means adapting how you run your business operations. From identifying greener suppliers to investing in technology, the choices that you make will make a positive impact on the environment and your business reputation.