by Jerry Mooney

The future of the world is looking greener than ever. On the state and the individual level, people are showing more and more care for how sustainable their practices are. The same should go for your business. Here, we’re going to look at five steps that most businesses can take to make themselves instantly friendlier to the environment.

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Easier to go paperless than ever

The paperless office isn’t just saving trees. It’s saving money for printing costs and storage, too. Nowadays, it’s easier to go paperless than ever. Not only can you easily organize all the documentation the business needs. Now you don’t have to worry about losing those important files with Cloud backup options and external hard drives making it easier to keep it all protected.

 

The energy question

Even if you go paperless, that means it’s only more likely that your office is running a higher energy bill instead. Getting an energy audit performed on the office can help you see how and where that bill is being run up. Start codifying rules about leaving desktop PCs and lights turned on when no-one is using them. Then look into energy saving alternatives, from appliances like LED commercial lights to alternate energy sources like ground pumps or solar panels. The temporary cost is usually outweighed by the amount of savings made from the switch.

 

Know your demands

Businesses are used to buying in bulk, but the more physical resources you have to store, the more energy you have to spend. Especially if you deal with goods that need to kept in specific conditions and temperature. It will cost you less and require a lot less energy expenditure on your end to figure out your demands and work to them to the best of your ability. Avoiding taking on more resources than you should or your finances will suffer for it.

 

Repackage to purpose

When your goods pass from your business to the consumer’s hands, you still need to keep thinking about sustainability. Household waste is still at unacceptable levels, but you can make it easier for consumers to cut that waste by looking into options like PCW packaging. You shouldn’t underestimate the amount of people who will look for recyclable marks on their product packaging as part of their choice as a consumer.

 

Be good to green employees

Your employees are as much a part of the business as the office and the products, but you don’t have as much control on them. What you can do is incentivise greener behaviours. For example, you can run drives for recyclable goods at the business with a reward on the end. Or you can reward those who travel by public transport, bike or on foot. Something simple like an extra break or flexible work conditions can be just the kind of reward they’ll strive toward.

Going green is good for more than the world. It can save you a lot of money, too. More than that, it can make you money. The market is showing that it really cares and is willing to support those businesses that make an effort to go green. Make sustainability a key feature of your business and it could win you some new customers.

Jerry Mooney is co-founder and managing editor of Zenruption and the author of History Yoghurt and the Moon. He studied at the University of Munich and Lewis and Clark College where he received his BA in International Affairs and West European Studies. He has recently taught Language and Communications at a small, private college and owned various businesses, including an investment company. Jerry is committed to zenrupting the forces that block social, political and economic justice. He can also be found on Twitter.