Is it really important to reduce the overall environmental impact of your entire supplier ecosystem?

To answer the above significant question let’s find out the important facts given below:

The benefits of an environmentally friendly business

Running an environmentally friendly business helps you reduce your impact on the environment and preserves natural resources. Your business can help the environment in many ways. For example, you can:

  1. Use products that reduce your reliance on natural resources (e.g. rainwater tanks, solar hot water systems)
  2. Use products that are made from recycled material (e.g. office supplies made from recycled plastic, furniture made from recycled rubber)
  3. Look at all your business activities to see if you can do anything differently (e.g. reducing air travel by holding conference calls instead of interstate meetings).

Making your business environmentally friendly not only benefits the environment but can also save you money.

Recycling reduces your costs

Avoiding, reducing, reusing and recycling can lower your costs. For example, a few simple changes to how you deal with paper can involve your staff in environmentally friendly processes while saving you money:

  1. Avoid using materials unnecessarily
  2. Reduce your paper needs by asking staff to print double-sided
  3. Reuse by encouraging staff to use scrap paper for message-taking instead of purchasing message pads
  4. Recycle by shredding excess paper – you could recycle this commercially or invite staff to take it home for their compost or mulch heaps.

Good practice can attract new customers

Promoting your environmentally friendly methods can set your business apart from your competitors and attract new customers who want to buy products and services from an environmentally friendly business. Before making any environmental claims about your products, you should read the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s green marketing and the Australian Consumer Law to help you comply with the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (which replaced the Trade Practices Act 1974 on 1 January 2011).

Focusing more on your environmental impacts can also help to attract and retain staff.

Improves sustainability:

Reducing the environmental impact of your business will improve the sustainability of your business. If you are less dependent on natural resources than your competitors and have ways to deal with rising costs due to climate change, your business will have a greater chance of long-term success.

Make your business environmentally friendly:

Making your business environmentally friendly should save you money on electricity, paper and other resources – money that you can reinvest in your business.

Assess your impact:

You should assess your current impact on the environment. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) can help you to find and fix inefficiencies in waste, water and energy with their free ecoBiz program.

Get everyone involved:

  1. Set up regular discussions with employees so they can suggest ideas to help your business help the environment. This boosts morale and generates goodwill as every person in your business can contribute to your environmental goals.
  2. Tell your customers how your business is environmentally friendly so they can make an informed decision to choose you over your competitors.
  3. Contact your suppliers and ask them to help you. Do they offer a discount if you order in bulk and reduce the frequency of deliveries? Can you return their packing materials for them to re-use in exchange for a discount on goods?

Make green purchasing decisions

Almost everything your business buys uses energy and resources and creates waste. Sustainable purchasing is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment. Ask your suppliers if their products are made from recycled materials. Research which suppliers have the least impact on the environment.

Spread the word:

  1. Make your environmental policy clear to new staff at induction so they know what they can do to help.
  2. Use signs around your business and on your website, packaging and invoices/receipts to tell customers what you are doing to help the environment.
  3. Encourage suppliers to help you; for example, your email sign-off could include a request not to print emails unless necessary.

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