A common misconception is that running an eco-friendly business is expensive. While transitioning to sustainable business practices does come with a price, there are a range of money-saving advantages worth making changes for. Positioning your business as environmentally-supportive can reduce overhead operating costs and make it a favorable option to conscious consumers. Here are three operational habits that can boost savings and drive success when implemented strategically.
Implement environmentally-friendly office practices.
Does your office recycle regularly? Since the majority of waste that office environments produce is recyclable, it’s worthwhile to make recycling a standard practice. To get started, designate an ambitious employee to take the lead with the initiative. Their responsibilities can include spreading awareness among employees and arranging for proper disposal, which will determine what materials should be recycled and how those materials need to be separated within the office.
Depending on how motivated employees are to participate, the initiative may be more successful if it's implemented gradually. Consider kicking off the program by recycling paper. As this becomes a routine habit, begin collecting other materials such as plastic bottles or aluminum cans. A recycling program will reduce office waste and encourage employees to be more mindful of materials they use and dispose of throughout the day. This may even lead to a decrease in material consumption, which will promote savings on office supplies.
Going paperless can be a major undertaking for businesses, but it is a great way to reduce paper consumption and reduce costs associated with buying paper and printer toner. Today, many technologies are available to streamline procedures digitally and lessen the need for paper. Like any procedural change, there will be some employees who are more apt to jump on board than others. In time, the level of comfort will increase, and less paper will be used.
Tip: Digital banking it a great way to go paperless plus it allows you to be more efficient and productive so you have time to focus on other important aspects of your business.
Source goods from sustainable suppliers.
Many businesses feel the pull between wanting to purchase cost-effective supplies and sourcing from socially responsible suppliers. At the end of the day, it is often price that drives the decision. However, as environmental awareness and corporate responsibility has increased, there has been a shift toward making sustainable sourcing more affordable. If there was ever a time to explore green options for your business, the time is now.
In a nutshell, sustainable sourcing means obtaining goods that your business needs from companies and suppliers that make sure what they produce is not harmful to the environment, can be recycled or reused, or is made from renewable materials. A great way to find suppliers that uphold these values is to look locally. They may not have the same online accessibility or convenience of larger corporate organizations, but they can often provide better quality products and higher quality customer service. In addition to the variety of environmental benefits, working alongside other nearby businesses is favorable for the local economy.
Take advantage of incentives for being a green business.
As awareness of environmental impacts increases and a shift toward living sustainably occurs, consumers are becoming more conscious of the values of businesses that they choose to go to. Capitalizing on this in a genuine way can help brand your business and set it apart from the competition. When a business truly incorporates sustainability into its value system, the authenticity will shine through.
Businesses that take an active role in being environmentally conscious may even qualify for tax benefits and other financial incentives on both state and federal levels. Tax credits are available for energy efficiency, solar energy, reduced emissions, and more. Furthermore, there are a range of grants and financing programs that are offered to businesses that are striving to become eco-friendly. These financial opportunities may provide the momentum your business needs to get to the next level.
Businesses of all sizes, from all industries, can benefit from being eco-friendly. Whether going green is a new venture for your business or a practice that is ready to be expanded upon, strategies and opportunities can be adapted to fit your needs. These changes have the possibility to increase savings, draw in new customers, and strengthen your business for the long-haul.
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