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Sustainability in the office – Green office tips

Building on Global Recycling Day (18th March 2023) discussions, Emergent Group took the initiative to engage with employees, asking for their ‘green office tips’ and ideas for how we can be more sustainable in the office and as a business, and reduce our footprint.

The behaviour of our employees is crucial in delivering our sustainability outcomes. By listening to their ideas, we hope that they in turn feel more involved and encouraged towards making lasting changes. Underpinning this is the support of senior management, whose engagement sends a clear message to staff and lays a good foundation for making complex decisions.

Some visible and immediate changes (‘quick wins’) that Emergent Group will start to implement include:

  1. Setting easily measurable targets that form part of our corporate performance. Setting targets gives us direction and ensures that focus is not lost on our sustainability journey.
  2. Being prepared to invest in technology. Some outcomes are only likely to be deliverable through investment in our buildings or systems – but it does not have to cost much.
  3. Getting to know our numbers! We have already started to gather good data on all our utilities and travel. Knowing what we use and where, and establishing a baseline, will help us to manage resources and report accurately on performance.
  4. Dedicate people resources towards delivering our sustainability outcomes. While delivering our sustainability objectives needs to be part of everyone’s job, having a dedicated person or team to provide advice and direction will reap rewards.
  5. Doing the simple things on energy! Being mindful of the standards of insulation in our buildings and looking at where low-energy lighting could be installed. We will also look to control building temperature to an agreed standard and fit voltage optimisation.
  6. Doing the simple things on waste and water! We plan to:
    1. Remove desk-side bins (controversial in many offices!) so that staff are mindful of where they need to dispose of their waste.
    2. Have clearly labelled recycling points at various locations around our offices including bins for e-waste and batteries.
    3. Conduct regular bin audits and publicise our findings to staff.
    4. Look into fitting low-flush toilets.
  7. Not offsetting! Instead of paying money to an offset company, we will look to internalise the expenditure and invest the time and money in directly reducing our own emissions.
  8. Think about our procurement. We are looking to consider sustainability issues as part of our supply chain moving forward.

Emergent Group company Advitech’s Sustainability services can help your organisation plan your sustainability initiatives (ESG) and path to net zero with purpose, reliability of data, and realistic targets.