How Your Organisation Can Reduce Waste and Recycle More
Whether you’re a public or private sector organisation, the chances are you’ll generate a lot of waste in the course of your day to day operations. You might think that it’s an unavoidable consequence of doing business, but it’s one that will also eat into your profits.
If you focus your efforts on reducing waste and recycling, it can cut your waste management costs considerably, and it won’t do your organisation’s green credentials any harm either.
The business benefits of reducing waste and recycling
- It will reduce costs and improve your organisation’s bottom line
- If you understand the amount and types of waste that you throw away, you’ll be in a better position to acquire waste management and recycling services that actually meet your needs
- It makes your organisation more sustainable which is great for its reputation and for attracting high-quality employees and clients
- It’s better for the planet
Reducing waste in your organisation
The best way to manage waste is to produce less of it in the first place. Look at your operations and see where you’re being wasteful, then take steps to reduce waste. So this might be anything from negotiating with suppliers to have less packaging on your deliveries to encouraging employees to print everything double-sided or use email wherever possible.
Could you rid your canteen of disposable coffee cups, cutlery, and plastic bottles and encourage people to use reusable cups and standard cutlery, and install a water machine where they can refill their own bottles when they need to? Can you reuse envelopes if you’re sending things internally? These are just a few examples of changes you could make to reduce waste and prolong the life of valuable materials.
Donate things you don’t need
If your organisation wants to get rid of furniture or electronics, some charities will be happy to take them off your hands. Anything that saves precious materials from landfill and benefits someone else in the process is well worth it.
Recycling helps save valuable materials from landfill and provides us with some brand new products for a fraction of the energy costs. It’s a fact that despite your best intentions, some waste just can’t be prevented, so recycling should always be the next option on your list if this is the case.
If you’re thinking about implementing a recycling programme in your business, look at the amount and type of waste your business produces, whether the waste you produce requires specialist facilities, what recycling services are on offer in your local area, and where you could feasibly and securely store waste and recycling receptacles on your premises. Remember they have to be easy to access for employees and for collection teams, but protected against unauthorised access.
Getting your employees involved
Once you’ve decided you’re introducing a recycling scheme, you have to let everyone know about it. Make it clear to your employees that sustainability is important in your organisation and that you expect everyone to get involved.
To get employees engaged, you can:
- Have a talk or an event to launch the recycling programme. Nominate a senior manager to be the spokesperson for it-the programme will carry more weight if it’s seen to be supported from the top down.
- Have a little fun. Hold team recycling challenges and try initiatives like ‘zero waste lunches’ or have an official walk or cycle to work day once per month.
- Where you have recycling bins stationed, make the signage clear. It should be clear to employees what does and does not go into the bins to make recycling easier and reduce the risk of costly contamination.
- Put recycling and waste bins together. Just having a waste bin means that the only option is to throw something away. Having a recycling bin next to it will make people think twice before they throw.
- Colour code your bins. Across the organisation, opt for coherent bin colours, so employees and visitors know exactly what each bin is for.
- Join in with awareness events like Earth Day and Recycling Week. If an individual can make a difference by reducing waste and recycling, imagine the impact a big organisation can have.
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Check out our range of products, and if there’s anything else you’d like to know, we’re just a phone call or an email away.