Global warming and climate change are popular topics of conversation nowadays. Consumers are becoming increasingly eco-conscious and want to support sustainable businesses that adopt environmentally friendly practices. More and more companies are going green and your business should too, especially if you want to remain competitive and meet consumer demand. Lowering your carbon footprint can do more than just boost your brand image; it can also cut your business overheads and save you significant amounts of money each year. The best part is that going green has never been easier and the new year is the ideal time to make eco-friendly changes and focus on sustainability. Here are some ideas on how your local business can go green in 2021.
Improve your energy performance
If you are searching for ways to make your company greener, then your business premises is a great place to start. Most companies have loads of opportunities to make their offices and facilities more energy-efficient. Not only will this reduce your carbon footprint, but it could also save you significant amounts of money on your business utility bills. An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) will give you a realistic overview of the current energy performance of your workplace. An accredited assessor will visit your property and assess the performance of your commercial building and operations. You can use the recommendations on the EPC certificate to make your business premises more energy-efficient. Some of the top energy-saving improvements include adding insulation to wall cavities and ceilings, sealing gaps, replacing old windows and doors, upgrading your heating system and installing energy-efficient appliances. These upgrades should pay for themselves over time through the cost-saving benefits.
Create an effective recycling programme
Pretty much every business produces waste, regardless of size or industry. This includes paper, cardboard, glass, plastic, food and packaging materials. If this waste is not recycled, then it will end up in landfills where it will be left to produce greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide. Recycling is much more eco-friendly as it helps to lower emissions and reduce pollution. It can also be more cost-effective as it encourages you to reuse items rather than just throwing them out. For instance, old cardboard boxes can be shredded and transformed into green, cost-effective packing. Create an effective recycling programme in the workplace that focuses on reducing waste, reusing items and recycling as much as possible. Place clearly labeled recycling bins around your workplace and teach employees how to sort their recyclable waste correctly. Recycling experts at Wybone suggest removing under-desk bins to deter staff from putting recycling in the general waste for convenience.
Switch to cloud computing
Business technology has advanced rapidly over the years and companies no longer need to rely on paper and filing cabinets to store information. Switching to cloud computing is a simple solution to reduce paper waste and lower carbon emissions. Besides the environmental benefits, cloud computing can also streamline business processes, enhance collaboration, boost productivity and reduce operational costs. The cloud also offers more security and is typically safer than storing sensitive data in physical filing cabinets. Switching to the cloud is relatively straightforward, but you must plan the move carefully to ensure a smooth transition. There are plenty of articles offering advice on how to move to the cloud while minimising disruption to your business.
Train your employees
If you have set a business goal to go greener in 2021, then it’s essential that you get your employees on board with your plans. Your staff will play a fundamental role in the success of your green strategy, so take the time to explain your new policies to them and discuss the benefits of becoming more eco-friendly in the workplace. You can make going green fun by creating friendly office competitions and offering incentives to encourage employees to be more sustainable. For instance, offer a reward to the employee who recycles the most or give a shopping voucher to anyone who cycles to work instead of driving.
Going green goes beyond merely helping the planet. Adopting eco-friendly practices in the workplace can bring about countless benefits, including reducing your overheads and boosting your brand image and reputation. Going green can also help you hire and retain skilled employees and attract new customers. Luckily, there are plenty of simple ways to make your business greener. Use the new year as an opportunity to make positive changes in your business and become more eco-friendly.