Sustainability: Balancing best practices with cost concerns

Sustainability. Recycling. Going green. Whatever you choose to call it, demonstrating environmental responsibility is undeniably a key part of industry best practice in the 21st century. Companies are genuinely striving to do their part, but at the same time, cost constraints can limit the extent to which they can afford to reduce, reuse, and recycle.

As a facilities or property manager, you may be confronted with making your relocation as green as possible, while keeping an eye on the bottom line. Ultimately, only you can decide the correct balance to strike, one that offsets immediate costs with long-term benefits.

Let’s look at office furniture for an example. If you’re reviewing office space requirements or preparing for a move, you will need to decide what to do with any redundant desks, chairs, tables, and the like. It may seem as though the cheapest option, in terms of basic short-term expense, would be to have it hauled to landfill. But if you were to factor in the environmental cost and the potential benefit to the community, opting for the recycling route adds a tremendous amount of value.

For example, according to Recycling for Greater Manchester, every tonne of recycled office furniture diverted away from landfill prevents 2.7 tonnes of CO2 from being emitted. In addition, donating redundant office furniture supports your local community by providing good quality, reusable items to families on low incomes. Need more incentive? Don’t forget the Landfill Tax, which is scheduled to increase in the next year, skip charges and disposal costs.

When we at Johnsons are contracted to help businesses move offices, one of the questions we are asked most often is, ‘What happens to our unwanted items?’ With the ‘Johnsons Zero’ solution, we discuss with clients the decisions that will be right for them when it comes to the cost/sustainability debate. And what we have found is that simply getting rid of office furniture in landfills is not always the least expensive option.

Most people don’t realise that their old furniture can be refreshed. For example, JohnsonsZero can take your old office chairs, recover the fabric and refresh the frame, giving you a next-to-new chair for a fraction of the cost.

As an environmentally responsible business ourselves, we are accredited to BSEN ISO 14001:2004 standards, and have a fully developed and audited environmental management system in place. What’s more, we know that all organisations regardless of size want to demonstrate best practices to the extent possible. That’s why we’re committed to providing you with options to effectively recycle, donate or sell unused or unwanted items in ways that will best benefit your company, your community, and the environment.

We know that each client’s situations is unique, so we work with you to develop bespoke plans to identify, manage and reduce environmental impact while mitigating costs. We provide a fully audited solution to help you meet your Corporate Social Responsibility mission and comply with all current laws and regulations, all whilst looking for every possible cost reduction opportunity.

As part of our cost reduction report when you engage with JohnsonsZero, we provide you with an itemisation of the CO2 savings we can make by avoiding landfill, in line with best practice guidelines and our approved recycling process.

Our goal is to work with you to develop a bespoke – and truly collaborative – solution that will help you meet your environmental management goals whilst keeping an eye on the bottom line. We believe there are myriad simple actions that can have an enormous impact on the environment and your local community, and together we can customise the plan that’s right for you.

If you’d like to learn more about JohnsonsZero, visit our JohnsonsZero page or contact us directly on 0800 279 2505.