How to make my office more sustainable

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Emily Burn

Creating a sustainable office environment is not just a trend; it’s a responsible business move that resonates with consumers and employees alike. To foster sustainability within your organization, it’s important to start from the ground up, engaging your workforce and instilling environmentally-friendly habits.

Research from Recycling Lives shows that 81% of consumers prefer to support companies with a history of sustainability. Here are ten practical and cost-effective steps to help you make your office more sustainable.

Support Green Vendors

Begin your journey toward sustainability by doing business with eco-friendly brands and companies. Research potential vendors to understand their sustainability efforts and ensure they align with your company’s environmental values. Showcasing your commitment to sustainability is not only good for the planet but also plays a pivotal role in employee retention and recruitment.

Promote a Paperless Office

Embrace the digital age and reduce paper usage in your workplace. Tools like Microsoft Office, Google Drive, and digital HR and payroll software have made it easy to manage work efficiently while reducing the need for paper and ink.

Invest in Office Plants

Introducing greenery into your workspace has multiple benefits. It enhances the aesthetics of your office, elevates the overall atmosphere, and even reduces stress and anxiety among your employees. Plants also improve indoor air quality by removing pollutants, making for a healthier and more productive work environment.

Recycling Program

Start by establishing a recycling program in your office. Clear signage on designated waste stations in common areas will help your employees differentiate between recycling, compost, and trash. Some offices even designate a “green captain” responsible for ensuring proper waste disposal.

Conserve Energy within the Office

Reducing energy consumption is both environmentally responsible and taking important steps can save a lot of money

Encourage employees to turn off lights and electronic equipment during off-hours. Provide guidelines for energy conservation, such as shutting down computers at the end of the workday and keeping unused meeting rooms dark. Some offices go a step further and install motion-sensor office lighting to automate energy savings.

Reduce and Reuse

Cut down on waste by encouraging employees to use reusable coffee mugs and water bottles. Consider offering company-branded merchandise, such as travel mugs and stainless steel water bottles, and create incentives like monthly gift card rewards for those who consistently use reusable containers.

Encourage Sustainable Transportation

Support alternative modes of transportation for your team members, such as walking, cycling or sharing rides, especially for those commuting into busy shared offices in London. Offer transit subsidies as an employee benefit. Furthermore, if possible, consider remote or hybrid work models, which significantly reduce carbon emissions.

Get Outside and Volunteer

Engage your employees in meaningful volunteer programs that support green causes and conservation efforts. Encourage them to take paid days off to contribute to environmental initiatives, fostering a sense of purpose and corporate responsibility.

Conserve Human Energy

Invest in your employees’ well-being by providing a safe and non-toxic work environment. Offer sustainable, nutritious options, such as organic fruits and vegetables. Organize fun social activities and ensure that employees have access to adequate sick and vacation days, along with comprehensive benefits.

Make Green Thinking a Part of Company Culture

Engage your employees by involving them in the creation of an environmentally conscious workplace. Collaborate with your team members to gather their ideas and insights. This not only empowers your employees to actively embrace your sustainability mission but also ensures that green thinking becomes an integral part of your company’s culture.

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