We all have a responsibility to do our part for the environment, be it through recycling more, producing less waste, and turning lights off when we’re not using them. For business owners, they have both a personal and a corporate responsibility to do their part for the planet, with a lot of consumers now looking to switch to sustainable businesses and shunning those that are overly polluting or not doing enough to tackle climate change.
Depending on your business industry, there may be several far-reaching steps you can take to tackle your company’s effect on the environment. Here are five small ways you can make your business more eco-friendly.
1. Automate your Processes
Are a lot of your processes and procedures still done manually using paper? If so, look into automating your systems. This may include looking into accounting software to keep track of cashflow, automating invoices and receipts to prevent the need for paper copies, and storing customer/employee data securely online or on a server.
There will always be the need to keep paper records of certain things, but you may find that a lot of your processes could be automated. Not only will this help the planet, but it will also go a long way to making your business more efficient, and it can even help you save space through the need for less storage!
2. Allow Flexible Working
Post-pandemic, most employees want to work from home on a part-time basis where possible, citing a better work-life balance, reduced commuting costs, and increased productivity. As an employer, you can accommodate this and also do your part to save the planet at one time. If your employees are able to properly do their jobs from home, let them do so. They won’t need to travel into work, therefore keeping more cars off the road and reducing the carbon emissions associated with your business.
3. Refine your Supply Chain
In addition to looking at your front of house policies, it’s worth looking into your supply chain to see if any changes can be made there to make the logistical side of things run smoother. One simple way you can improve the sustainability of this side of things is to swap timber pallets for presswood pallets which are made from recycled materials.
You might also look into sourcing products nationally rather than internationally and placing bigger orders to reduce the number of trips required to deliver your goods.
4. Look into Renewable Energy Sources
A lot of people have started to install solar panels onto their homes as a source of renewable energy, and you can do the same for your business premises. Not only will this help to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels, but it will also save you money in the long run, too!
5. Incentivize Walking/Cycling to Work
Many of your employees may be more likely to walk or cycle to work if they had an incentive to do so. With this in mind, consider introducing a scheme that rewards those who take sustainable modes of transport to work. You may even consider including those who carpool. If your business is in a remote area, think about giving vouchers for employees to buy electric or hybrid vehicles, and consider swapping out your company vehicles for more sustainable alternatives.
Making your business more sustainable doesn’t have to be a big mission. With these five tips, you can successfully reduce the impact your business has on the planet without having to make huge changes across the board – and you might even save money in the long run!