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Six Ways Facilities Managers Can Plan For A More Sustainable Future

Six Ways Facilities Managers Can Plan For A More Sustainable Future
22 April 2020 | Updated 24 April 2020

In honour of Earth Day, here are six simple ways facilities managers can plan for a more sustainable future. 

It’s a common misconception that making changes within your business to become more “green” means big additional expenses, lots of resources, and dramatic operational changes. But by focussing on the smaller, simpler changes, it’s surprising the difference that can be made. 


Clear out your car park 


We expect that your company’s car park is probably empty at the moment anyway, but just imagine if you could keep it that way? Initiate an incentive programme for walkers and bicycle commuters, and encourage colleagues who travel from similar areas to think about carsharing. 


Prepare to go paperless 


Printers in the workplace are open to overuse. More often than not, work can be viewed on-screen, rather than on a print-out. Employees may well be learning this whilst working from home, and hopefully any habitual reliance on using the printer may reduce once back in the office.

As a general rule, employees should be encouraged to print only when necessary. Not only does this reduce paper wastage, but it also helps cut energy required to run the printer, which in turn reduces energy costs and extends the lifespan of your printer.


Baseline your energy consumption


In a recent article from ThisWeekinFM, we looked at opportunities whilst your building is temporarily closed. One of which was to set a baseline for your energy usage.

As the saying goes, “You can’t manage what you don’t measure,” so establishing a baseline usage will help you track the effectiveness of your sustainability initiatives. Any measurements recorded now, can be useful to compare against occupied space, when normal activity ensues.



Don’t Waste It!


We recently hosted an informative roundtable alongside waste management company Reconomy and a group of industry peers, capturing what was discussed in a series of videos. The theme was around more effective waste management, covering everything from measurement and managing demand, to how to affect the triple bottom line. 

In essence, the videos are a great way to start when looking to make real change when it comes to waste in your business

View the roundtable videos now



Keep remote working


If remote working is proving to be a positive change for your business, then why not consider keeping it that way?

If possible, you could allow employees to work from home on alternate days. Employees can still be in contact with those in the office and it’s also likely that they will get more work done at home without the distractions that often occur in the office environment.

Technology allows employees to have flexible work arrangements, and by having fewer employees in the office, less lighting, cooling and running workstations would be required. 

You can read more about how technology can assist your team with collaborative working here.


Create sustainability champions 


Do you have passionate employees who are always banging the drum for environmental concerns and sustainability? You could consider making them sustainability champions, to promote simple steps and best practices within the workplace. There are some great tips on where to start here.

Leadership is, of course, key to embedding the sustainable business model and the process typically starts with the CEO getting their leadership team on board. However, it is not enough to have sustainability champions at the top — they must be cultivated at all levels of the organisation.


Being green doesn’t have to cost the earth


If you’re still unsure about the cost versus benefit side of sustainability, take a look at this opinion piece, it may just change your mind.

Picture: A hand holding a small globe

Article written by Daisy Miceli | Published 22 April 2020


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