Climate change and global warming are issues that concern both individuals and businesses, since we’re all responsible for the current state of the environment and we should all do our part to ensure a safer and healthier future for our planet. Therefore, making your business greener is not only the right thing to do, but also a responsibility that you must assume.
However, taking the green route is much easier said than done. Businesses that have limited financial resources can experience greater challenges in implementing eco-friendly solutions and adopting an environmentally friendly approach. When you’re on a tight budget, you have to choose your priorities wisely, and sustainability goals don’t always make the cut.
Fortunately, it’s possible to become a more sustainable business even if you don’t have a large budget. Going green doesn’t necessarily require you to make large investments and change your business operations from top to bottom. There are also plenty of cost-effective options you can employ to greenify your business and reduce your impact on the environment. So, let’s see how you can jump on the sustainability bandwagon without breaking the bank.
Reuse and repurpose
The first eco-friendly solution you could employ doesn’t even imply an investment, but it requires you to work with what you already have. Look around your business premises and see what items can be reused or repurposed. Instead of replacing old furniture or equipment with new items and spending money in the process, you can just give the pieces that you own a chance at a second life.
You can fix items that are faulty if that’s possible or find them a new use around the office. It’s also a great idea to minimize disposable office products such as paper towels, plastic cups or cutlery and purchase reusable items instead. The benefits are numerous: you’ll cut back on expenses, reduce the amount of waste your company produces, make sure there are less items that end up in a landfill and thus reduce your carbon footprint.
Improve waste management
Producing as little waste as possible is the ultimate goal, but you also have to employ effective solutions for the waste that you still produce. Since you can’t have a zero-waste business, the smartest thing you could do from an environmentally friendly perspective is to implement an efficient waste management system in your company. This might sound like a complicated and expensive undertaking, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Apart from applying a system of selective collection of waste to step up your recycling game, you can also search for balers for rental and hire that can help you lower your waste costs, save space on site, save time on waste handling, and create a safer and healthier work environment without leaving a dent in your sustainability budget.
Educate your employees
Building a sustainability culture in your company starts with educating your employees on sustainability and environmental protection matters. If the people who work for you don’t share your company’s values and objectives, it will be next to impossible to achieve your sustainability goals.
So, what you have to do is strive to get everyone on board by implementing training programs and educate your employees on suitable practices. Environmental education and awareness training will get your company one step closer to creating a green culture.
One characteristic of traditional office spaces is the large amount of paper that is being printed on a daily basis. While this has been the normal operating mode for many years, it’s far from being consistent with the eco-friendly approach. Just think of all the trees that are being cut every year to produce printing paper that is then used in office environments.
These days, businesses have the opportunity to reduce paper use or even go entirely paperless, thanks to the multitude of digital solutions and tools available. Choosing to use cloud storage services and employing digital means of communications can help a lot in this respect.
Adopt a remote work model
The next logical step after creating a digitized office environment is the adoption of a remote work model. It’s true that not all businesses operate in an industry that makes telecommuting possible or they might not have the necessary infrastructure to switch to a remote work model.
But if your business type allows you to ditch the physical office setting for a virtual one, we recommend you to give it a try. Not only will you be able to lower business expenses, since you won’t have to pay for the space, maintenance or work equipment, but you’ll also have access to top talent and you’ll reduce your business’ carbon footprint significantly. It’s a win-win situation for everyone.
Get an energy audit
Even if you think you’re doing everything in your power to make your business as energy efficient as possible, research shows that many businesses are wasting energy without being aware of it, and your company might be in the same situation.
The best way to check if your business is wasting energy and determine the most effective low-cost methods to reduce energy use is to get an energy audit. A business energy audit will provide a clear overview of your company’s current energy usage, detecting inadequacies and helping you address them.
Switch to energy efficient lighting
Speaking of energy efficiency, one of the most effective and budget-friendly solutions to reduce energy consumption is to replace all conventional light bulbs on company premises with energy efficient LED lights.
While this might imply a significant expense, depending on your business requirements, the long-term cost savings of LED bulbs are undoubtedly worth the investment. Besides, you don’t have to replace your lighting fixtures, you just have to replace the bulbs, so you won’t be spending a fortune on them.
As you can see, there are plenty of green options out there for all budgets and business types, so if you want to make your small company more sustainable, you can start right away.