The changes needed to begin reducing the amount of waste at your business are not always complicated and time-involved. It is often the little changes that can make the deepest impact. Meeting with waste management consultant experts like Reduction In Motion can help devise an overall streamlined system, but below are 7 tips to beginning the process on your own today.
1 – Eliminate the Use of Disposable Cups, Plates or Utensils
Keeping disposable cups near the coffee maker and other disposable goods used for serving and eating might seem like a kind thing to do in your breakroom, but it can amount to an incredible pile of waste over the course of a month or year. Purchase coffee mugs with your company logo that everyone can share and use, or encourage them to bring their favorite mugs, plates, and utensils from home. Most food establishments have learned that the easiest way to reduce waste takes the use of reusable plates and utensils, saving the disposable for take-out purposes only.
2 – Offer Cloth Towels or Hand Dryers
An overflowing trash container in the bathrooms filled with paper towels will end up making it to the company dumpster. Try offering real cloth towels that customers and employees can use. Simply stack them neatly on the counters, or get a roll dispenser for cloth towels. The small charge assessed for cleaning and reusing is far less than the waste generated from paper products. You can also install hand dryers.
3 – Purchase or Rent a Two-Sided Copy Machine
Switch to using a two-sided copy machine. You will generate much less waste with paperwork using this type of office machine. They can be rented to save a few dollars. You are doubling the potential for paper waste by continuing to use a single-sided version.
4 – Negotiate with Suppliers to Bring Materials In Reusable Bins
Beverage companies have been using a system of reusable containment for several years. Discuss these options will all of your suppliers and see how much waste can be reduced in excess shipment materials. Pallets can usually be reused unless they are broken beyond repair. Simply stack them and have a company pick them up that puts them back into commission.
5 – Purchase Items from Companies Using Minimalist Packaging
Any raw materials you need to have shipped to you can often be sent in minimal packaging, especially if you are buying in bulk. Avoid doing business with companies that seem to go the extra mile to increase your packaging waste. There are always other companies willing to meet your needs for a greener package.
6 – Donate or Have Employees Take Extra Food Home
High amounts of food waste can increase your costs for pickup and bring about an unwanted pest problem. Encourage employees to take any extra food home, or call a local charity and donate the items. You can also slash the costs for customers to help finish foods that are almost gone.
7 – Purchase Quality Equipment with Extended Service Warranties
Office equipment, shop equipment, tools, air conditioners, water heaters, refrigeration units, ovens, stoves, microwaves and all other business-related items should be bought with longevity in mind. Purchase high-quality equipment that comes with an extended service warranty. It will be many years before the item has to hit the trash pile.
This is just a sampling of the many ways your company can cut the costs and amounts of waste generated. Get with a qualified consultant today and find out how to take the steps needed to make a noticeable impact.