Blog

How to boost sustainability at your business

August 7th, 2015 Category: Commercial

A growing number of consumers and businesses are prioritising environmental concerns when it comes to making major business decisions.

Sustainable business development is all about making decisions that help to preserve the environment, and cutting your carbon footprint.

While making the transformation into an eco-friendly business may once have been seen as costly and complex, nowadays it is relatively easy for an enterprise to boost its green credentials.

Simple things such as cutting down on the amount of paper waste, turning off electrical equipment when not in use, and educating staff about the importance of being sustainable can all go a long way in helping a business to play their part in preserving the environment.

In this feature, we look at some of the other main ways enterprises can cut their carbon footprint.

Cut waste

One of the biggest ways that firms can prevent the buildup of waste is to stop it from occurring in the first place.

This includes things such as paper waste and food waste. For example, taking simple steps such as cutting down on the amount of paper printouts, recycling paper, cardboard and cans, and conducting many of the day-to-day admin tasks online where possible.

Food businesses can also play their part by ordering food with as little packaging as possible, only purchasing the amount of food necessary for the business to run and making better use of resources.

All of this can go a long way towards helping to reduce waste.

Audit

Conducting an audit of your current processes is a good way to ascertain what you are currently doing as a business and highlighting areas where you may be able to improve.

It is always a good idea to regularly review what you do, survey each department to determine how their day-to-day working practice impact the environment and what habits and attitudes need to change in order to boost sustainability at your business.

At this point, it may be a good idea to delegate certain responsibilities and tasks to individual departments or team leaders in order to ensure that your environmental policies are enforced at every level of the organisation.

Environmental cleaning

The cleaning products that are used can have a major impact on the air quality and environment within a building.

However for enterprises that hire external cleaning contractors, it can be difficult to negotiate environmental concerns, especially if the cleaning company in question does not prioritise it in the same way that you do.

This is why it is always a good idea to hire a cleaning company that specialises in green cleaning, and has sustainability and quality at the forefront of their agenda.

Air quality

A number of different factors can impact the air quality within a building. This includes but is not limited to, airborne toxins and particulate matter, mechanical ventilation, dust, computer equipment, chemicals, cigarettes, deodorant, furniture, and a whole host of other causes.

Therefore, it might be worth monitoring the air quality within your building, and there are a number of different tools on the market that will do this for you, which are fairly cost-effective.

One of the main ways to improve air quality is to ensure that a building is well ventilated, and that any ventilation system used is cleared and maintained according to manufacturer's instruction.

Cutting down on the number of industrial chemicals used for various purposes such as cleaning and selecting a building that is some distance away from traffic and pollution is another way to cut the pollution within an office.

It is also important to highlight the fact that a number of different studies have proven the link between poor air quality and respiratory diseases.

This will not only have impact the health and wellbeing of your staff members it will also have a knock-on effect on productivity, which will impact your bottom line.

Therefore in order to contribute to the reduction in the number of sickness absences, it is definitely worth addressing the issue of air quality.

Natural light

Choosing a location with a lot of natural light reduces the need to have external lighting in the building.

Large open plan offices with plenty of windows naturally require less lighting than those offices which are tucked away at the back of the building with no lighting.

Energy reduction

Simple steps such as turning off computer equipment when not in use, and using low-energy lightbulbs and equipment can all play their part in helping your business to become more eco-friendly.

Consider using motion-sensor lighting in the building, which automatically turns off after long periods of inactivity as a way to reduce energy consumption.

Not only will it help to boost your green credentials, it will also help to shave significant amounts of money off of your utility bill too!

Tags: