Preserving the environment is one of the biggest issues in the world and taking good care of it should always be taken into account. Even though there are many people in the world, the influence of an individual is enormous.

So if an employer wants his business to be environmentally friendly, he must make sure that his employees are aware of their social responsibilities.

To fulfill all the necessary conditions of a modern business, every business owner should provide his employees with a proper training and knowledge in order to raise their environmental consciousness.

Follow these ten practical steps, and your office will easily go green.

1. Use Electricity Wisely

To do anything today, it is normal to use a lot of electricity especially in the places such as companies, offices, etc. Although it cannot be avoided, wasting electricity can surely be reduced.

What can you do to save electricity?

Turn off all computers, printers, photocopiers, and other equipment that doesn’t need to be left on at the end of the day and leave them off until you need to use them again. Check that all computers and monitors are set to their most energy efficient settings (e.g., monitor set to shut off after 15 minutes of no use). When leaving a room for a longer period, switch off the lights.

2. Use Non-Toxic Cleaning Products

As everyone already knows, some of the most harmful chemicals that people are exposed to are found in cleaning products. The fact that should never be overlooked is that most of the cleaning products have different toxins within.

The environment is also greatly affected by those toxic chemicals, not only the people.

But what else can be done? Your office has to be clean and tidy even though you know the cleaning products are not good neither for employees nor the environment.

There are some cleaning products that are made without those chemicals, or at least without the worst, most toxic ones. These green cleaning products are the ones you should always choose when shopping for your office or arranging the cleaning of the workplace.

There are some who are hesitant to use environmentally friendly cleaning products because they are afraid that they are costlier than the regular products. However, remember that these cleaning products pay for themselves by not harming our environment and are, therefore, more cost-effective in the long run.

3. The Famous Three R’s

One of the biggest environmental issues in the world is the problem of waste disposal because all the ever-growing garbage needs to end up somewhere.

All we can do about it now is try to reduce the quantity of waste we make, because currently, there is no other practical solution. That can be done by following the famous circle – reduce, reuse, recycle.

After we reduce the amount of garbage our workplace regularly accumulates, we can proceed to select everything that can be reused.

“Reduce, reuse, recycle” means more than just throwing old note paper in the blue bin. Really think about everything you use. Do you need disposable cups at the water cooler? Can you use the other side of the used sheets of paper you’ve thrown in the recycle bin?

Recycling has two main benefits: It is very eco-friendly and it can help your company save more money.

4. Use Paper Wisely

The use of paper should be reduced to a minimum, since we all know that in many offices paper still cannot be completely cut out.

There are ways that printing and copying can become more environmentally friendly. Double-sided printing for example, is an excellent way to reduce paper usage. Use scrap paper for notes and shredded paper as packing refill. You can also save on ink by putting printers and copiers on the right settings.

5. Change The Way Of Transport

Transportation has a great impact on the environment and its pollution. To become the owner of an environmentally friendly business, you should do everything you can to encourage your employees to come to work using alternative modes of transport.

This task is not an easy one, but you surely can motivate your employees to use their bicycles or, if they live far away, to use public transport. Both solutions help preserving the environment, but they are also cheaper and healthier options than always using a car.

Another solution, probably the best and the most eco-friendly one, is telecommuting. It is not always possible, but for the businesses that can afford their employees to work from home it is a great opportunity to do good for the environment.

Telecommuting is eco-friendly since there is no using of any means of transport so that it helps reduce the pollution and conserve resources.

6. Reduce The Use Of Paper

As it was already said, garbage is one of the most serious environmental problems. The big part of the total waste quantity is paper waste.

Offices use a large quantity of paper daily, and there is no way of cutting out the use of paper completely. There will always be documents that must be in printed form.

But we can try to reduce the use of paper by keeping as many documents as possible in digital form, reading on-screen and only printing documents when absolutely necessary. Also, we can pay attention that we use only 100% recycled content paper products in the office.

7. Make Uniforms Last Longer

If your business is one of those that require wearing uniforms, you can help preserving our environment by having uniforms that last longer.

A better option than buying uniforms is renting them out. Rented uniforms are eco-friendly option since they are washed and repaired by professionals and due to that they last longer and so help our environment.

Think about getting Alsco’s workwear service that provides an economical and professional uniform service to businesses throughout Malaysia.

8. Refillable Options

Things used in offices, such as highlighter pens, whiteboard markers, and correction tape, are just some of the office stationery which have refillable options.

You can extend the life of the outer casing of these products by buying refills or cartridges instead of getting new ones.

9. Stop The Use Of Disposable Cups

Every business owner should try to reduce the total amount of waste produced by his business. Among other things, it can be done by lowering the use of disposable cups.

You can give your employees an ‘official mug’ they can use at work. If that is not the case, encourage them to bring their own mugs.

10. Use Environmentally Friendly Office Products

Always try to find greener office supplies when shopping for your workplace.

They are only 5% more expensive than ordinary office supplies. Do not buy cheaper things just because they will save you a small amount of money, when they greatly affect our environment.

Follow these tips and make your business environmentally friendly. As far as uniforms are concerned Alsco can help you – consider Alsco’s uniform service options.

Photo courtesy of Flickr Images by Matthew Bellemare