Tips for a Greener Office

By Sally Edwards

3 tips and tricks to make your office more eco friendly that you might not have considered.

You recycle your cans and paper and always pick the fair traded items, when possible, in the supermarket. But how do you go green in the office? We all know the advice - recycle the paper, choose recycled products, cycle to work, turn off your computer when you’re not at work. But is there any other ways you can make your office greener, besides filling every desk with plant pots and using campfires for heating systems? We’ve put together a list of ways to tackle making your office greener that you might not have thought about before.

Suits and pencil skirts may be all well and good for that smart look but do you need your employees to be in them every day? Sure, if you have client meetings it’s important to look the part and impress, but if it’s just a normal day in the office is there any need? Suits can get rather constricting and hot in the summer which means you’re going to have to turn the air conditioning even lower in the office in order to accommodate. If your employees were able to wear shorts and a short sleeve shirt or a flowing, non fitted dress on those warmer than average days (I appreciated England does not get a lot of these) then you can leave the air conditioning to work less. If you leave air conditioning on for an extra hour every day for a month, the energy consumed is enough to power a TV for a year so imagine the amount you’re using to just drop it those extra few degrees every day.

Sure, if you have client meetings it’s important to look the part and impress, but if it’s just a normal day in the office is there any need?

On the topic of those warmer than average days, have you got some windows to let in the warm summer breeze? If so, make sure you are making the use of them all year round to let the light in. We are always told to switch off lights that we aren’t using but it becomes habit to turn lights on even when we don’t need them. So, instead, pull the blinds up and let that natural light stream through the office and keep the lights turned off. Plus, natural light is good for office moral and just makes everything feel that touch less clinical. A win, win situation for both the environment and your workforce.

...pull the blinds up and let that natural light stream through the office and keep the lights turned off. 

Printing can be a huge waste of paper but, unfortunately, sometimes it is inevitable. In some cases, what you can see on a screen cannot be replicated to what you can see printed out, plus occasionally you need all of the information in one place so you can annotate and make notes. So if you do have to do this, how are you going to keep all of your notes together? Stapled? It would work but it’s not efficient. Instead, ditch the stapler and get a bunch of paper clips that you can reclaim once you have finished using the documents. They’re simple to use and easy to store plus, unless you lose them a lot, they will long outlast the stapler. And you avoid the dreaded office search for someone who has staples left.

Going green does take a lot of consideration but these small tips can help to make your officer a greener environment without requiring much thought or effort from your team. Going green doesn’t have to be difficult, it’s the little things that count.