For companies that adopt sustainable practices, saving the earth also means saving money. These seven simple steps will help your business reduce both its impact on the environment and its operational costs.
As reports of our planet’s deterioration become increasingly dire, companies everywhere are eager to join in on efforts to save it. From climate change to air pollution to water scarcity, there are any number of troubling trends that businesses can help reverse by reducing or altering their consumption habits.
But some corporate leaders fear that these efforts, while good for the earth, will be bad for business. And while it’s true that some sustainability measures require an upfront investment, nearly all of them end up saving companies money by reducing usage of costly resources. Here are just seven of the many steps your company can take towards shrinking its environmental footprint while seriously cutting costs.
1. Go Paperless
Storing records digitally not only saves money that companies typically spend on paper and ink, but in some cases can even eliminate the need for expensive equipment like printers. What’s more, reducing your paper consumption also reduces office clutter and makes organization easier, which can boost productivity. Going paperless can involve big changes to critical business processes — such as creating accounts on cloud-based services like Dropbox or Google Drive — so make sure to include the whole company in your effort to engineer this change.
2. Opt for Green Web Hosting
When you’re shopping for a web host, keep in mind that different vendors rely on different energy sources to power their servers. Consider opting for a company that pledges to run their hosting servers at least partially on alternative energy sources, or even on energy that they themselves produce. Web hosts that make their own energy are able to pass the resulting savings on to their customers.
The bottom line: green hosting is not only more sustainable, but more affordable too.
3. Practice Green Procurement
Green procurement means purchasing products and services with a minimal negative environmental impact. But while any company can endear themselves to the media over a one-time choice to partner with a sustainable supplier, true green procurement represents a continuous commitment to start-to-finish consumption and process management with consideration of environmental impact. True green procurement manifests not only in the services, materials, and goods that a company pays for, but in the very product the company itself produces.
4. Use Renewable Energy
Companies can also save money by powering their offices with renewable energy sources like solar, wind, hydropower, and geothermal energy. Wind and solar are quickly becoming just as affordable as fossil fuels, which means businesses now have the opportunity to operate more sustainably without increasing energy costs.
5. Weatherproof Your Office
The Department of Energy has found that warm air escaping from the doors and windows of buildings accounts for some 20% of all heating costs. Ensuring that all entryways and windows in your office are completely insulated is an easy way to shave off one-fifth of your heating bill during the winter, as well as cut your air conditioning costs during the warmer months.
6. Let Your Employees Control the Heating
Practically every office building has more than one person complaining about the temperature, and often with good cause. Office buildings tend to keep their heat and air conditioning going at excessive levels throughout the year, causing some workspaces to reach unbearable temperatures. By giving control of the temperature to your employees, you’re not only making them more comfortable, but you’re more than likely cutting back on heating and cooling costs, as well. Similar results can be gained by letting your employees control office lighting.
7. Implement Water Intelligence
According to the EPA, 20% of the water we use is lost through small leaks and other inefficiencies in our water systems. This issue has gone unresolved for decades, but companies can now save that water by proactively identifying these leaks and inefficiencies and replace faulty fixtures and equipment. By implementing WINT, the world’s most tech-forward water intelligence solution, businesses can understand which fixtures are most efficient and which usage practices are contributing to waste, as well as prevent disastrous, major leaks.
Rather than relying on imprecise visual inspections that take up valuable time and resources, WINT uses IoT-enabled smart endpoints to translate your building’s water usage into actionable insights, enabling a more proactive approach to control water usage. It also enables building managers to automatically shut off water in the event of a major leak, saving millions of dollars in potential damages and gallons of wasted water. With better water intelligence, your business can shave huge portions off their water bill, as well as their environmental footprint.