Sometimes moving offices is unavoidable; your company may have grown, your rent might have increased, or you could simply fancy a change of surroundings. Whatever the reason for your office move, you have to remember that the act of transferring your entire set-up from one office to another has the potential to be extremely wasteful. But it doesn’t have to be. Here are some guidelines to help you avoid waste next time you move from one office to another.
Resell your furniture
If you are moving offices, it is likely that you will be swapping out your old furniture for shiny new workspaces. Perhaps your old desks won’t fit the new space, or will not suit your new surroundings as well as a new set of furniture would. Since there are 672,000 tonnes of furniture waste each year in the UK alone, you should do everything you can not to add to that number. One way to ensure none of your discarded furniture goes to waste is to sell it on to second hand furniture buyers.
You could do this yourself through websites like eBay, but a simpler and quicker way to get your furniture to a willing and ready buyer is to hire a removal company will handle this aspect for you. Many firms, such as London specialists Clearance Solutions, now offset any item’s resale value against the removal cost as part of their standard office clearance services. By handling every aspect of the reselling themselves, through their own network of contacts, this not only saves customers money but effort in trying to sell their unwanted goods on.
If you have no interest in the discounts reselling furniture could give you, or if your business is generally more charitably inclined, donating your unwanted office furniture could be a great move for you.
Charities like British Heart Foundation can arrange furniture collection to pick up anything you want to donate. The Furniture Donation Network can also collect furniture from you and take it to multiple charities if you want to help several causes in one charitable move.
Recycle all recyclables
Aside from furniture, your old office is likely to be filled with materials and clutter such as paperwork, cardboard boxes and plastic covers, particularly once you’ve unpacked. When you move offices, it is important to recycle these things to stop them ending up in a landfill.
According to figures from National Geographic magazine, an estimated 55% of recyclable waste is left in landfills each year, with only 33% of it actually going on to be recycled. And it doesn’t take an environmental genius to know the severe impact the propagation of landfills can have on our environment. Taking the extra time to ensure all recyclable waste is disposed of correctly could make all the difference in reducing your office move’s waste footprint.
It’s not just old printer paper that matters here, either. Once again, your furniture comes into play, as things like wooden shelves or plastic stools can be taken away and used as recycled or upcycled materials, which in turn can be used to make, among other things, more furniture.
Go minimal with your new office
If you follow the steps above, you will have done all you can to ensure your office move itself was not wasteful, but the most important thing is planning for the future of your office, and therefore, the future of your business. It is unlikely your business will stay in one location forever, so make sure you plan ahead for your next office move when you arrive by establishing good green practices, and reducing the amount of future waste you might create.
The best way to do this is to go minimal with your new office. There are many ways you can do this, such as only using the furniture you need, cancelling all junk mail, using online and cloud alternatives to paper and physical filing, and only buying and using the furniture that you desperately need. Follow these tips from Earth911 for more help with making your office greener if you are struggling.