How Your Office Can Be More Environmentally-Friendly
With the return to offices on the horizon, workforces have the opportunity to make their operations more efficient and environmentally friendly. From paperless HR solutions to implementing new office features, here are ways your office can contribute to environmental health—and maybe save money along the way.
6 Ways Your Office Can Be More Sustainable
Ideally, all offices would already have the tools to run more efficiently and use less energy, but that’s simply not the case. Apart from your office building being able to collect rainwater or harvest energy from solar panels, these are ways to upgrade your current space’s sustainability efforts.
- Swap Out Disposable Supplies
If your office has a kitchen that uses disposable water cups, coffee cups, and utensils, consider replacing them with reusable utensils or compostable ones. Better yet, use this as an opportunity to boost company culture and supply your team with branded mugs and reusable water bottles. If your office bathrooms still supply paper towels, consider swapping them out for hand drying machines.
- Rethink Waste Management
Does your office have a recycling program in place? And if so, do employees adhere to it? Supplying recycling bins and composting bins is the first step in making waste management in your office more sustainable, but making sure your team knows how to properly dispose of waste is equally as important. Educate your employees so that they know which materials are recyclable and compostable, which bins they use, and other pertinent information. Your organization can sign up for programs like the Environmental Protection Agency’s program WasteWise, which helps organizations and businesses achieve sustainability through waste reduction and other programs. There are also local programs in many major cities that set up composting at offices and even pick up the composting each week.
- Install a (Modern) Water Cooler
If the term “water cooler” inspires images of employees hanging around a plastic water dispenser with disposable cups, it’s time to upgrade. Offices can install water-saving dispensers that aim to reduce not only unnecessary water waste, but also plastic waste. Some machines even count the number of plastic water bottles saved, like WaterLogic.
- Clean Out Your Supplies Closet
Do you have unnecessary subscriptions to office supplies that end up piling up in a closet? If so, it might be time to take inventory of the supplies you have, what your employees use most, and what your office can live without. Not only will this save trees and paper, but it will also most likely save you money so that you can consider upgrading to supplies that use recycled materials and less energy to produce.
- Time Off for Volunteering
Company-sponsored neighborhood clean-up days are not only good for the environment and neighborhood beautification, but they’re also great team-bonding opportunities. Arrange a Saturday morning clean-up or grant a volunteering day-off for team members to take a break from work to help with environmental efforts of their choice.
- Paperless HR Solutions
An easy way to eliminate paper use is to move your HR paperwork operations to a completely digital human resources information system (HRIS). With an all-in-one HRIS like BerniePortal, new employees don’t have to fill out a single paper I-9 form or other paperwork—it’s all online and can be done before the employee’s first day.
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