Top ten tips to making your start-up business eco-friendly

This is great news for the environment, but actually lowering a business’ ‘carbon footprint’ can be something that’s easier said than done when it comes to small and start-up business, what with limited resources in both funding and technology.

Ensuring your business is eco-friendly reflects well on you, it could be the boost your business needs in the sense that your business becomes a more desirable entity to your existing and potential customers, as well as helping to secure your place as a credible business within the market.

With all this in mind, we’ve compiled the top 10 ways that SMEs and start-up businesses can ensure their office is environmentally friendly without incurring high costs. Katherine Evans, from 08 Direct, takes us through how your business can reduce its carbon footprint and boost profitability as a result.

Email instead of snail mail
Paper is one of the biggest wastage that an office incurs, so why not email instead? Before you print anything out, ask yourself, do you really need a paper copy? Not only will you save on paper wastage but your paper spend will decrease as well.

Use call management features such as fax-to-email
Instead of installing an expensive fax machine in your office, along with incurring the extra costs it will entail, why not have your incoming faxes delivered to your email inbox? That way, you not only have a permanent copy on your hard-drive but you save yourself a lot of money.

Get a non-geographic number
By connecting a non-geographic number to your business telephone, you immediately give yourself flexibility and reduce your costs. With a non-geo number you can choose where your calls are directed to so instead of always having to travel to the office, you can receive calls straight to your mobile, saving further electrical usage and cost from extra telephony equipment and installations.

Work from home
Instead of you and your employees travelling to and from work every day or travelling around for meetings, why not work remotely? By doing so, you’ll decrease travel costs as well decreasing the amount of emissions that are created.

Encourage shared transportation
If it’s unavoidable to be out of the office, why not encourage car-sharing or the use of public transport amongst your staff? That way everyone will be in the office but will have sent out less carbon emissions on their commute.

Cloud storage
By moving your IT system to a shared data network, it has been found that your carbon footprint can be reduced by almost half. The potential for energy saving here is huge and by storing your business data remotely, every employee will be able to access documents from anywhere, encouraging better productivity, less paper usage and better profits!

Turn things OFF
Here, you have the potential to slash both your energy bills and your carbon footprint. If you make even just the smallest of changes, for example, unplugging your laptop once it’s charged, turning everything off overnight, you could potentially halve your business bills.

Hosted solutions
Similar to cloud storage, this allows your telephone system to be hosted remotely and lets just one supplier provide all of your telephone system. This also lets you have one call with instant messaging, video and voice all included, so meetings can be held online, reducing further the need to travel! By doing this, your business lowers its running costs and emissions whilst ensuring all calls are still received.

Make sure you recycle anything you can as it’ll not only reduce your waste production but your carbon footprint as well.

Energy saving
Everyone loves having a tea or coffee while they’re at work, but boiling the kettle over and over wastes a lot of energy. So earn yourself some brownie points around the office and offer your colleagues a drink when you’re making one!