Environmental sustainability has been a hot topic for quite a few years now, and it’s safe to say that the COVID-19 pandemic has only drawn more attention to things like global warming and pollution. Not to mention the huge impact that the many well-known corporate giants are having on the planet.
We often talk about what we can do to minimise our impact on the environment at home - recycling, switching to energy efficient bulbs, insulating our homes, driving less and so on, but we don’t often look at what we can do to reduce our environmental impact at work.
With spring on the way and hopefully a more positive year ahead of us, sustainability is something that every business should be looking at if they are to keep up with the times. Workspace design is a great place to start and there are many ways to incorporate natural elements and recyclable products into your office interior design.
Reduce your energy output by installing energy-efficient office lighting. Make sure the lights are switched off whenever the office isn’t in use and take advantage of natural light from windows during the day. Don’t forget, these changes will reduce your energy bills so it’s a win-win.
Not only does incorporating greenery into your office design create a positive and welcoming environment for your clients and staff, it also removes carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and generates oxygen which has a positive effect on employee mental health.
When buying new office furniture, consider low maintenance furnishings and purchase eco-conscious products made with recycled materials. Wherever possible, opt for multi-functional equipment so there is less plastic to dispose of and replace when it breaks.
One of the easiest ways to make your business more sustainable is to make sure your office has enough recycling bins. Your recycling bins should be easily accessible and clearly labelled – the more visible they are, the more obliged your employees will be to use them. We also recommend placing them next to any rubbish bins you have to give your staff the option to recycle every time they head over to the bin to throw something away.
Paper is essential for many businesses, but overusing and wasting paper is damaging to the planet. Encourage your team to print less and digitise as many documents as possible - this way they can be shared by email or accessed online.
For those documents that just can’t be made paperless, switch to using recycled paper and recycle your own paper too.
Put your heads together and develop ideas as a team. Not only will this help your business on its journey towards becoming more sustainable, it’ll also act as a team-building activity as you work together to generate a plan.
There are more ways to encourage sustainability in the workplace than you think. You could offer branded reusable water bottles to deter staff from purchasing plastic bottles or stock the stationery cupboard with reusable pens.
You may wish to encourage your employees to lead an environmentally-friendly lifestyle outside of the office too. For example, you could install a bike shed and inspire your employees to cycle to work, instead of commuting by the bus or train.
If you're looking to refurbish your office workspace and become more sustainable, please get in touch and organise a consultation with one of our experts today.
If you enjoyed this blog, you might be interested in some of our other blogs - How Office Design Can Impact Employee Wellbeing and Bring Back A Sense Of Community To Your Workplace In 2021.