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When it comes to corporate sustainability and waste management, our minds tend to jump towards the standard context of waste bins and recycling. However, the reality goes much deeper than just skips and wheelie bins. We believe sustainability is all about identifying exactly what happens in business day-to-day, so you can make improvements and manage the waste from your company to the best degree, and, where possible, mitigate it.

Rather than looking at this from a “green” perspective, the reality is sustainability has a value, and that value is saving on resources you’re using within your organisation that’s costing you excess money. In a growing and developing business it’s important to maintain robust cost management.

Want to know more on how to drive sustainable change, but don’t know where to start? Here are 5 ways to be more conscious of waste costs and not only save your business money but save our planet too:

1. Physical Waste

When it comes to physical waste that is produced from operating a business, the classic 4 “R”s come to mind: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Recover. We can do as little as reducing obsolete systems, processes, equipment and machinery. We can reuse what can be re-used in the workplace, and optimise waste output with the correct bins on site (as a starting point). As for recovery, it’s used as a method of extracting energy or materials from waste for further use, and for making materials into compost (such as food waste). Not only can we help our environment but this method of waste management can save businesses a lot of money, as it’s over 30% more cost-effective to recycle than it is to create general waste. Food contamination remains one of the biggest issues for effective waste management across multiple industry sectors today.

2. Purchasing Excess Goods

We’re all creatures of habit with this one – we tend to buy a little extra “just in case” something happens. It is often the case that there’s strategic excess over procurement when it’s built into projects, where we historically tend to purchase 10% extra in construction. This example is a great point in proving how we like to be over-prepared in order to save money, or if something is needed on demandBut is this something we need to keep counting on in order to be prepared for the worst? In smaller cases, with companies such as Amazon, who do “same-day delivery” or even your local corner shop, the excuses are starting to thin on whether you really need to buy that extra bit of stationary, or have an office floor filled with computers to fill a space. Not only is it a waste of space that could be used for greater or more urgent use, but also a waste of funds.

3. Resource Efficiency

It can be as simple as the last person in the office switching off the lights to the building, or shutting down a computer instead of leaving it on standby, but you’d be surprised at the amount of energy that is consumed when offices, warehouses, stores and workplaces are left sitting idle at the end of each workday! We can save the planet and the running-costs of our businesses by terminating the power to appliances when they’re not in use.

4. Package Waste

Highlighting the packaging waste of a product you’ve ordered is a sustainable approach to reducing your carbon footprint. When purchasing products for a business it’s often the case we’ve purchased it in bulk, and as a result of this, a high amount of package waste comes along with it. Whether it be the wooden pallets that it’s been transported on or the boxes it encapsulated in, it’s important to highlight that the waste from the packaging is not necessarily your waste that needs to be managed. Make sure you have conversations with the supply chain and product providers in order to mitigate your own carbon footprint and reduce your waste management cost.

5. Stock Management

Storing stock or products that no longer serves a purpose, has become obsolete or which is no longer safe for use is a bigger contribution to commercial waste than many realise. This type of waste can come from overstocking on PPE, education equipment and transport to name a few. Not only are we harboring produce that is unusable, but we’re also paying out extra costs for warehouse and distribution space that is used for a real purpose. We need to be asking the right questions from this type of waste: Are we overproducing stock, what is the cost of storing it, why this stock was not sent out in the first place and why is it sat in a warehouse costing funds to store these out of date products? Overall it causes a waste of money, product and space that you could be saving for the development and growth of your business.
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Here at GPT, we believe that waste is a frame of mind. Waste and wastefulness go hand-in-hand, and the attitude that should be taken from this is to only take on board what is needed in your business and to highlight the environment it currently sits in. We work across all types of commercial waste producers, from public service, including health, education, transport, science and defense, to private sector customers who are industry-leading in a wide variety of markets.

By utilising GPT, businesses will be able to track exactly how much waste is being produced per year and will refine and calculate what is actually necessary to the company. We can evaluate a cost-effective way of getting the most out of your business with a major reduction in waste in order to drive a sustainable change through waste management.

To speak our expert team about your waste management requirements, call 0844 854 5000 or email