Thursday, August 23, 2012
Saving money at the office and saving energy for the environment can be very compatable. Here are six tips to get your office moving in the right direction.
1. Use the Windows for Natural Air Conditioning
We often become so accustomed to having our air completely controlled to a specific temperature. However, during at least two seasons a year, there are going to be many days that the outdoor air is within 5 degrees of perfect. If moisture or allergy trouble are not problems, shut down the climate control and open the windows. In addition to energy savings, you will also have fresh air and uplifted moods.
2. Don't Leave the Lights On
2. Don't Leave the Lights On
This is a very simple thing to do, if you can just get everyone to build the habit of flipping the switch when leaving a room. Bathrooms, kitchens, conference rooms, and break rooms are leading culprits. One way of increasing awareness is to take one month and put signs over the switches, reminding everyone to shut them off, no matter how long they will be out of the room. Then compare the energy savings at the next monthly meeting. If possible, install timers or motion sensors. Remember to rely on natural lighting when you are able by meeting in rooms with windows, or even, to the delight of many, out of doors.
3. Make Your Dinosaurs Extinct
Older equipment is less energy-efficient. Not only was it designed during an earlier time that often was not as keenly focused on energy consumption, but the parts were not asefficacious as newer parts have become. Combine those two factors with the added drawback of wear and time on machines and you simply get less energy output for the energy input. Buy newer machines with better technologies like back-lit monitors with Energy-efficient LED screens, and units that will automatically default to sleep mode when a certain amount of time has passed.
4. Change Your Light Bulbs
Consider replacing the older standard incandescent bulbs you may still be using. Newer bulbs, such as the compact fluorescent bulbs, use about one fourth of the power. They have a longer lifespan and you will need to replace them far fewer times. They now come in several shades, or hues, so that you don't have that pasty look to the room for which fluorescent bulbs used to be so infamous.
5. Reduce Your Printing Output
It is easy, in this day and age, to allow ourselves to save every document that might one day be useful by printing it out. However, this not only costs extra money to the office in ink and paper, but it wears out the machine faster and used needless power. Prioritize what truly needs to be printed out over what can actually be saved as data or bookmarked online.
6. Recycle Always and Reuse Frequently
Reusing items in the office can go a long way to helping with energy savings. A closet could be set aside to store items that absolutely need not be thrown away. Evan old printed out papers, that do not have sensitive data, can be saved and used as scratch paper. Office flower vases, lost items, cardboard boxes, etc. Even if the office cannot use them, they can most likely be offered to the families of office workers or given away to those who can make use of them. Recycle everything by having bins readily available, marked appropriately, for each type of material. Tape instructions on each bin so that each coworker knows just how to properly prepare all recyclables for pickup.
All of these are ways that office owners/managers can create an environment that is more frugal and better for the environment. If you happen to be an employee at an office where you can see some of these suggestions might be possible to implement, ask your employer for a meeting to discuss your ideas. In more cases than not, owners and managers are eager to hear of ways to reduce their operating costs.
David Ching is EQA Office Furniture's Marketing Director. EQA retails fine office furniture including office cubicles, conference tables, desk chairs and workstations. Get a 3D virtual walkthrough and a free quote on EQA’s website.