Climate change has been an important and prevalent topic for the past few years. As we come to realise the urgency of taking climate action, we also learn about different ways in which we can reduce our impact on the environment both on a structural and personal level.
It is becoming more and more obvious that the longevity of companies will depend on their sustainable policies and that the companies of the future will need to incorporate sustainability at the core of their practices in order to keep the business going. While that may sound daunting, there are small steps businesses can start to take in order to reduce their carbon footprint and move towards a more sustainable future. And office design is a perfect and achievable first step! Here is how you can start your company’s sustainability journey.
The first step towards sustainability is incorporating sustainable office practices into your workplace ethos. There are some simple first steps you and your employees can take to incorporate reducing waste into your office practices. Are you providing separate recycling facilities for plastic, paper and bottles in your workplace? Has your kitchen or canteen area replaced single-use paper and plastic cutlery, cups and plates with reusable kitchenware? Are you working towards digitising your documents instead of relying on printing? If the answer is no, these are only a few first steps that your company can take to reduce its waste.
But let’s not forget about office furniture! The choices you make here will have the most impact on reducing your carbon footprint. With the added challenge of COVID-19 most offices will need to be refurbished or at least make some additions in order to change their layout and welcome staff back to work safely. When redesigning a workspace, going for lower quality products might seem like a tempting way to save some money. However, investing in long-lasting, quality furniture can be a smarter alternative in the long term. Not only will you save money, but you will also reduce your carbon footprint by saving emissions on transporting your new furniture or disposing of the old one. Plus, quality doesn’t need to be expensive! There is a range of options for quality furniture for different budgets! You can also go the extra mile by choosing some innovative brands like Spacestor, whose products are at least 85% recyclable, or Frovi who have a new sustainable range, so that when your furniture does go out of use, the impact on the environment is minimal.
2. Reuse Your Furniture Creatively
Buying durable furniture that doesn’t go out of style is the first step towards a more sustainable workspace. A second step is investing in multipurpose or modular furniture so you can get creative with your office space without needing a full redecoration.
A couple of key creative choices can make your workspace versatile and multifunctional at no extra cost. For example, stacking chairs can be repurposed for both dining areas and meeting spaces, while modular seating can be used in the dining/leisure area and also for casual meetings and brainstorming sessions. Acoustic booths and screens are a great and easy way to change the layout of your office, whether you need a private space for conferences, phone calls or hot-desking.
Making smart, multipurpose purchases is not only sustainable, but it will make your place more adaptable to unpredicted and predicted workplace changes without breaking the bank.
3. Recycle and Use Recycled Furniture
Recycling is a tenet of sustainability and now it is achievable through office design! Over the past few years, we have seen a move towards sustainability with many of our office furniture suppliers and producers opting for recycled materials for their range of products.
In 2018, Humanscale introduced the Smart Ocean Chair that incorporates 2 pounds of recycled fishing net material as part of their efforts to prevent ocean plastic pollution. Profim is another brand who has moved towards sustainability in the past few years. They have been steadily increasing the amount of recycled plastic waste they use in their products, using as much as 1000 tonnes in 2020. By opting to buy furniture made out of recycled material you can reduce your impact on the environment without compromising on quality!
Cable Spines and Baskets
Climate change has forced all of us to think more in sustainable terms and has opened a world of possibilities in terms of the way we produce and consume. There is no denying that businesses will need to adopt sustainable policies in order to be viable in the future. Furniture and office design is a practical, tangible place to start! If you want to decorate or upgrade your office using these few simple steps, get in touch with our team of experts who can guide you through our best sustainable options!