Building a sustainable business: three simple steps

25th March 2020

Business sustainability is a critical workplace challenge. Quocirca’s Global Print 2025 Survey of IT decision-makers and office workers found that 83% expect sustainability to be important to their business by 2025 (up from 73% in 2019).

And with HP’s Workforce Sustainability Study finding that a clear majority (61%) of workers believe sustainability is mandatory for modern businesses, there can be no doubt that now is the right time to explore how to make your business more sustainable.

With this in mind, here are three simple steps your business can take to improve its sustainability: deploy sustainable technology solutions; establish your “green” credentials; and adjust your business culture.

Deploy sustainable technology solutions

From switching to LED light bulbs to establishing a “circular” technology economy in your business, it’s not hard to find solutions that will reduce your emissions and materials use.

Using managed service offerings, cloud storage, cloud printing and business process automation can all reduce your reliance on local hardware – not to mention your technology costs.

Circular technology economies rely on using devices with less new materials and more recycled materials, backed by device return and recycling services.

Establish your green credentials

A recent academic paper noted that “Companies are creating real strategic advantage by adopting sustainability measures … It’s not just a matter of being environmentally conscious – being green is positively good for business.”

You can use couriers and shippers that use electric or hybrid vehicles; source raw materials from suppliers with demonstrated environmental credentials; prefer environmentally conscious businesses and organisations as partners; and make your own “green” credentials known.

There is a growing market for “green” businesses, which more and more customers are coming to prefer. In 2017, research by Unilever UK found that a third of consumers prefer sustainable brands; in 2019 Forbes revealed that “UK Consumers Want More Organic Everything”; while by 2021 consumers aged 25–35 are expected to spend £117 billion on sustainable goods.

It’s a growing trend, and one you should embrace sooner rather than later.

Adjust your business culture

Culture is the foundation for change. Not only does accepting that sustainability is good for business have significant market and cost benefits (“sustainability continues to drive sales”), it’s also an increasingly important factor in attracting and retaining talent.

Climate change is Gen Z’s top concern, and as they move into the workforce, they want to make a positive impact on society, according to The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2019. Demonstrating a genuine commitment to making your business sustainable will give you an advantage in finding the best people to join your organisation.

Making your business more sustainable isn’t just good for the planet; it’s simply good business. The old mantra of “doing well by doing good” is truer than ever – don’t miss out!