“Going green” is a choice that your business can make today. With global warming at the forefront of government policy, your business must take part in supporting initiatives that are designed to combat the effects of climate change. Not only will you be able to contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions on a global scale, but you will also be able to future-proof your business.
What Does “Future-Proofing” Your Business Mean?
“Future-proofing” refers to the process of preparing your business for the future. It is designed to mitigate anticipated risks in order to minimize their impact on the business. Companies that are looking to grow their businesses will have to establish certain strategies in order to adapt to the changing times.
An increasing number of consumers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious. Customers are choosing to do business with brands that actively promote and practice sustainability. If your business continues to be “out of touch”, you may be at risk of losing a lot of consumers.
What Can You Do to Future-Proof Your Business?
#1 Go Paperless
The concept of the paperless office was first introduced in 1970. Fast-forward to today, and only a few companies have fully embraced digitization.
Most tasks in the office are performed digitally. It’s unlikely that you will find employees using a typewriter at work. For decades, email has been the main mode of communication, and now technologies such as Zoom and Google Meet have entered the digital space.
Despite the use of technology, there is a long way to go before businesses across the United Kingdom are completely paper-free. On average, an employee uses around 10,000 sheets of paper each year — that’s around 4.5 trees.
To future-proof your business, you must consider going paperless. Not only does this help the environment, but it also reduces costs significantly. Encourage your team to utilize communication apps and other productivity tools to be completely paper-free.
#2 Encourage Remote Work
Remote work boomed in 2020 when the majority of businesses across the United Kingdom were forced to work from home. In fact, a report by Finder showed that approximately 60% of adults in the United Kingdom were working from home as of March 2021.
Remote work has become the norm, forcing businesses to re-evaluate whether or not physical office spaces are still necessary.
Encouraging more employees to work from home can dramatically reduce your business utilities bills. With fewer people in the office, you will be consuming less energy. In effect, this will significantly reduce your carbon footprint, helping your business align with the United Kingdom’s “net-zero” target.
#3 Use Smart Technology
Smart technology and sustainability are often considered to go hand-in-hand. If your business has not embraced smart technology, such as power-saving lighting, temperature control, and smart water-saving, then it is time to contact your business utility UK provider. By leveraging smart technology, you can significantly cut your energy consumption and monitor your energy usage.
Ask business water suppliers in the UK if they offer smart water meters that allow businesses to gain insights into their water usage. This can help you identify the most cost-effective ways in which you can reduce water consumption.
#4 Switch to Alternative Energy
An increasing number of businesses in the UK are looking at renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, and biogas. Despite the high upfront cost, clean energy sources can help your business reduce its energy costs in the long run.
In addition, businesses that choose alternative energy can benefit from government grants, reliefs, and schemes. For instance, if your business uses solar panels, you may qualify for tax relief amounting to 30% of the installation costs.
#5 Reduce Meat Consumption
If your workplace has an on-site cafeteria, most of the options on the menu will likely contain meat. According to the Clean Air Council, the meat industry is responsible for eighteen percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Aside from that, meat production plays a large part in deforestation.
If possible, ask the cafeteria workers to prepare a fully vegetarian menu on some days of the week. Not all employees will be willing to give up meat, so it’s best to introduce vegetarian options slowly.
#6 Choose Eco-Friendly Hosting
Your company may have gone digital, but have you considered where your data is being stored? Your data is hosted on servers that are often housed in data centres. These servers must be kept in cool environments in order to prevent them from overheating. This requires energy — lots of it.
The good news is that many web hosts, such as Green Geeks, Host Papa, and Dreamhost, are going green by looking for eco-friendly alternatives to minimize their environmental impact. Eventually, “green hosting” will become the norm among industries that operate in the digital space.
#7 Reduce Water Consumption
Reducing water consumption is an excellent way to reduce your business’s overhead costs. The best part is that it’s extremely easy to do. Developing certain habits, such as installing dual-flush toilets and motion-sensor faucets. Sensor taps can reportedly save you as much as 30% to 50% on water usage.
Additionally, installing a rainwater tank, commonly known as a “water butt”, can help you save on your monthly water bill. Don’t forget to schedule frequent checks on your establishment’s pipework to ensure that there aren’t any impending issues such as leaks. It is estimated that 3 billion litres of water are wasted due to leaks each day. That is enough to fill 1,180 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
As you can see, all it takes are a few simple steps to start future-proofing your business. Taking action today can help your business become more environmentally aware and prepared for the future. Practising sustainability is not something that your business can take in stride. Instead, it is something that you must plan for as early as possible.
For more information about other green initiatives that your business can take, contact us today at watt.co.uk.