In honor of Earth Day, we’d like to share some tips on how to ensure your workplace is operating in an eco-friendly and sustainable way. We’ve taken a few of our favorite tips from our blog posts and the web and compiled them here for you.
- Use the “hibernate” feature on all PCs and turn off printers, microwaves, etc. before leaving the office. Electrical devices continue to draw power even when they are not in use; if your office is going to be empty for a few days (or even overnight), make sure to switch everything to “off” or “hibernate”.
- Give employees the option to work from home. Particularly in offices utilizing complete cloud solutions, staff members can connect with one another over the internet from any location, eliminating the need for a larger office space (which requires more energy to heat and cool) and additional facilities employees require on site.
- Keep the office a few degrees cooler in winter and a bit warmer in summer. Ask employees to dress accordingly, as small changes in the thermostat translate into big energy savings. Cloud computing solutions help implement these changes as they eliminate the need to keep a server room relatively cold to protect equipment from overheating.
- Opt for cloud computing and managed print solutions. By eliminating the need to power a large server room, you’ll enjoy reduced energy usage within your office. Managed print services identify instances where unwanted pages are printed; streamlining your print needs reduces energy expenses while simultaneously extending the life of your equipment.
- Host green meetings. Hosting virtual meetings is an excellent way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from travel and to reduce costs. Encourage employees to teleconference, utilize conference calls, or host a live web meeting whenever possible to reduce the need to travel from meeting to meeting. If you are hosting a conference, make sure to encourage attendees to stretch during breaks and provide them with healthy food choices. (CDC)
- Purchase green for the office. Whenever possible, buy products that will last, that are made from recycled materials, and that are energy efficient. Also, choose products that do not release toxic materials into the atmosphere. Choose green cleaning products, low VOC paints and surfaces and third party certified furnishings to maintain a healthy indoor environmental quality. Whenever possible, look for products that have environmental benefits and are nontoxic to human health. (CDC)
- Recycle EVERYTHING. Whether with the office or outside of the workplace, recycling is possible. Some examples include:
- If you need to print one-sided either make paper notebooks by getting together and paper clipping or stapling them together.
- Refill, re-ink or recycle all your printer cartridges
- Employ a recycling bin system
- Collect and recycle batteries – better yet switch to rechargeable
- Sell, Swap or Recycle old mobile phones
It doesn’t stop there though, complete the cycle by buying items that are recycled such as stationary, toilet paper, remanufactured toner cartridges and cleaning products sold in recycled containers. By ‘closing the loop’ you are helping to reduce the amount of new products being made and increasing your workplace sustainability. (Greenstreet)