How to Make Your Office Greener (Without Spending Any Money)

You don’t have to be an eco-warrior to make a positive impact on the environment. We can all make small changes in our daily lives, and the office is a great place to start. There are loads of ways to make your workspace greener that won’tblow your office budget.

We’ve included our top tips for you below. Start by trying out a few of your favourites, and see what a difference it makes in your office!

The Benefits of a Green Office

Before we go on, it’s important to know the benefits of a green office. True, every little bit adds up to a big difference for the environment, but there are other ways a green office can make a positive impact.

First and foremost is cost – going green can actually help keep you out of the red! From lower electricity bills to saved paper, little changes can make a measurable change to your bottom line at the end of the financial year.

And it’s not all about the money. According to a study by UCLA,“employees at green companies are more productive than employees in more conventional firms.” Give your employees a productivity boost by adopting a more eco-friendly workplace.

How to Make Your Office Greener

Test a few ideas from the list below to see the difference going green makes in your office!

  1. Remove personal bins

If you have a business in Scotland, you already know that the Scottish Waste Regulations require you to recycle. Reduce waste even further by removing small personal bins throughout the office. Just think of all the extra drink cans and plastic containers that will make it to the recycling bin instead of into the general waste collection. An added bonus is that by making staff get up to go to a recycling station they get a break from looking at a screen, which has health benefits.

2. Get your printer green

Have you ever seen an email signature with a reminder to print only when absolutely necessary? Setup takes less than 30 seconds, but they can prompt recipients to think twice before printing emails they don’t really need in the first place. When printing documents set the default option to print double sided, if documents need to be printed single sided then it can be easily changed. 

3. Set desktops to power off at a preset time

Although many office managers ask their employees to shut off their desktop computers at the end of the day, chances are not every employee remembers to do so. Solve this problem by setting your office desktops to power down at a certain time each evening. You’ll see a measurable difference on your electricity expenses by the end of the year.

4. Remove light bulbs in overly bright areas

If your office has a lot of artificial light (or if there are areas of your office no one ever uses), save some energy by removing excess lightbulbs in excessively bright areas. Your employees will enjoy the boost in natural lighting, and you’ll save both energy and cash. 

5. Use scrap paper instead of sticky notes 

As much as we love cutting down on paper waste, we’re not suggesting you do all of your notetaking on used paper. Using scraps for things like jotting down phone messages, however, is a great way to get more use out of your paper before recycling it. Ask your office manager or receptionist what other ways they can think of to repurpose your office scraps.

6. Repurpose existing items

Your “upcycling” doesn’t have to stop with paper. We launched a reuse service that helps our clients get rid of their unwanted items in an environmentally friendly way. We’ve taken everything from IT equipment to old bedding which was welcomed by the Edinburgh Cat and Dog Home. From local charities to art installations, we make sure your old items find a good home – rather than landfill. If you’re looking to declutter your office, let us know.

7. Start an office green team!

54% of employees who are proud of their company’s contributions to society are more engaged than those who aren’t. What better way to up their engagement by starting an employee-run green team? Ask someone from each department to join, that way the whole company will have a say and are more likely to buy in to the idea of a green team. Start a new office club and encourage them to educate their colleagues and plan fun, eco-friendly events around the office. If you already use our recycling and waste services, then you’ll receive our monthly Carbon Reports. The reports are easy to read and are perfect for letting your team and employees see the good work they are doing and motivate them to keep recycling!  

Thanks to our friends at Changeworks Recycling for contributing this blog.

Want to learn more about Changeworks and how they can help businesses save on costs and energy? Browse their site to learn more about business waste collection, or get in touch for a friendly chat today.

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