Most large companies have green travel policies these days but if your workplace is still stuck in the dark ages, then maybe they need some advice or someone to volunteer some time to help build some travel policies. Whilst for larger companies, they might have a HR department of Estates department that will own and develop these types of policies, for smaller companies this isn’t always the case.
It might be that the company owner has no interest in developing green travel policies and other environmentally friendly policies, but if you can persuade them that not only will they save money, but there are also loads of other benefits then you might be able to make headway.
Building a case
Some companies may have avoided introducing policies because they lack the personnel and knowledge in this area and don’t want the additional wages of someone who can pick up the work involved. If this is the case, you could suggest that a Green group is set up through volunteers at the company. There is lots of information and guidance available from the government in most countries. WRAP in the UK provides an advice line, website with downloadable publications, interactive tools, seminars/exhibitions and case studies and best practice guides.
If you can find all of this kind of supporting material, then developing a company policy is a lot easier. You could even ask if you can take some hours each week out of your regular work to develop the policy, rather than having to volunteer your time if your company is open to this sort of arrangement.
There are a number of different areas that you can look at under a green working policy and many of them can end up saving the company money, so it really is in their best interests if they don’t feel that saving the environment is reason enough.
Go Paperless – Whilst most office workers will work on PCs/laptops there still seems to be a strong number of people who feel compelled to print documents off when it is unnecessary to do so. Instead of handing out PowerPoint print offs, your business should provide a screen to display the slides and then send them electronically afterwards.
Electricity Saving – If lights and other electrical equipment are out of use for long periods, they should be switched off whenever it is reasonable to do so.
Green Travel – Whether it is the commute to work or business travel, a lot of money is wasted on petrol and other travel expenses. For business meetings; is it essential to attend in person or could it be done via Skype or another online conferencing facility?
Car-pooling and public transport – Could employees be offered incentives to take part in car-pooling or to take public transport? Advertise the use of companies like Ridester.com who offer car-pooling options. Promote the benefits of this from colleagues getting to know each other better or allowing you to do a bit of relaxed reading on the train/subway etc. rather than be stuck in stressful traffic jams.