While the logistics of waste disposal are left to any business owner, the law holds you responsible for any waste that is generated within your business, and it's your duty to see that it's properly disposed of. This goes beyond hiring a commercial service to remove trash two or three days a week, however.
Just like your home, over time your offices and employees' workstations will accumulate unnecessary clutter, especially documentation. This article offers tips to carry out your office spring cleaning, as well as ideas to help you keep away the junk once you're done.
1. Deal with paper piles
Even though the world has gone digital, there are still documents that businesses must have and maintain for some time, which is why paper piles are the biggest problem for almost all businesses. If you just cannot get a handle on all that filing, consider hiring a temp for a few days to sort and file away your important documents.
If your business space doesn't have enough storage for a filing room, consider using storage facilities for rent and storing documents that are not immediately necessary. Encourage your employees to mark different types of documents and store them as they come in, which is the easiest way to prevent accumulation of junk.
You can also create a 'shred and recycle' centre where unnecessary papers are shredded and gotten rid of with the regular garbage service while those that can be reused are stored in a central location, instead of having employees maintain piles on their desks. Invest in a scanner so that you can digitize most of the older records and then get rid of them.
2. Think before printing
The biggest reason paper piles fill up is because you and your employees create them. Therefore, you can institute policies to ensure that only the most important things are printed. If an email can be sent, don't send it out in physical format. If there's an office presentation, you can ask the team to send out digital copies through email and have everybody come into the presentation with their laptops.
Consider how much paper is wasted in unnecessary copying and printing. You can digitize your receipting, invoicing and even requisition systems with clients, who will be very supportive once they discover you're doing it to reduce wastage. Trees are a valuable natural resource, and it's everybody's role to conserve the environment where they can.
3. Can you recycle?
Your paper trail can be recycled in many ways. From your office, you can invest in double-side printers to reduce number of papers used by half. If not, non-essential documents that must be printed out can be done on the other side of papers that were printed before but are no longer useful. In addition, there are recycling centres where papers can be taken and recycled into other products such as tissue paper. Talk to a rubbish removal service about your recycling options.