This post was written by Emily Farrar, Lead Customer Advocate at Shoeboxed, the premier document scanning and organization service since 2007.
Earth Day was April 22nd, prompting many small businesses to identify ways to reduce environmental impact. No matter the month, there’s never been a better time to explore some fresh, creative ways to go green around the office. Check out a few of our favorite ways to reduce your company’s environmental impact with these seriously simple solutions.
1. Get a smart power strip
We all know that unplugging appliances when we’re not using them is a great way to conserve energy, but running around your office plugging and unplugging every lamp, computer and coffeemaker can be a pain.
Thankfully, you can install smart power strips around the workplace to save energy-- and save money on the electric bill. Go green with power strips that intuitively senses when energy is not being used, and essentially shuts the current off until power is needed again.
2. Go paperless
Going paperless is more than a trend - it’s a lifestyle. Adopting the paperless way of life in your business means not only digitizing the piles of paper you’ve accumulated over the years, but also finding tools that prevent more paper clutter piling up on your desk.
To start, you may want to invest in a scanner to digitize your important documents, or if you don’t have time to do the scanning, you can send the documents to Shoeboxed and they’ll do all the work for you. Simply fill one of their Magic Envelopes with your documents, drop them in the mail, and they’ll be scanned and organized online for you to access anytime. After scanning, you can opt to have the documents securely shredded and recycled so they’re out of the filing cabinet and ready to be reused.
Opt for an eReceipt to prevent printing whenever possible, or use the Shoeboxed app to digitize paper receipts then recycle them right away!
3. Set up a carpool
Carpooling is a great way to save on gas and mileage, and it also encourages friendships between employees!
Send an email to the team to see if anyone in your office would be interested in sharing rides-- you might be surprised at the amount of interest you receive! Make sure to cover the basics like pick up and drop off times, who drives and when, and how often you’ll carpool. Even if your schedule only permits you to share a ride twice a week, you’ll still save money on gas and make a positive impact on the environment.
4. Forget the bottled water
Bottled water is one of the most harmful environmental products out there. Americans toss nearly 40 million plastic bottles per year, stuffing our landfills with waste that won’t even begin to decompose for at least seven years.
Even worse? It takes millions of gallons of oil to produce the number of plastic bottles bought by Americans each year, making bottled water a serious contributor to our carbon footprint.
So instead of stocking the break room fridge with plastic, give personalized water bottles as gifts to employees, encouraging them to ditch their plastic bottle habit.
5. Buy in bulk
It may be more expensive up front, but buying food and office supplies in bulk cuts down on packaging waste and reduces pollution caused by shipping and production. Bulk purchases also save you tons of cash in the long run.
With a minimum of conscious effort on your part, you’ll be able to reduce your small business’s environmental impact and go green in a way that sustains the health of the planet.
What steps has your small business taken to go green?