Creating A Green Office: 5 Years Ago vs. Today
By Krista DeKuyper | March 29, 2021 |
Creating a Green Office
Creating a green office doesn’t mean the same thing as it did 5 or 10 years ago. Having a ‘Green’ office or workplace environment is about more than saving paper or reducing electrical usage.
What Green Used To Mean
Five years ago, creating a green office environment was about savings trees, cutting back on printing and paper copy items. You may remember seeing the “reconsider before printing this email”.
Companies focused on the amount of waste they created. Depending on your industry and work you have a variation of available green options. Industrial, manufacturing, and other goods based industries have significantly more opportunity when it comes to being green. The concept of going green for these types of business has been an ongoing improvement over the last decade. But, for office jobs a reduction of waste is limited. After we stop printing and start reducing the amount of power we use, where do we go next?
Manulife Financial Cuts Back On Printing
Within the insurance industry we even saw some of the global conglomerates make major changes. Manulife as an example completely stopped printing brochures for their quarterly content. Doesn’t sound like a big change but when you consider the scale of the company and how much printing they were actually conducting for marketing material it adds up.
What A Green Office Means Today
Today, a green office has more than one definition. It has become assumed that you will create as little waste as possible and now being green is about more than just reducing your printing. When people think of green in today’s society they think of wellness, health, wellbeing, and corporate social responsibility.
“Being green means you are Earth Conscious – both the planet and the people on it”
Since society expects organizations to have a green paper efficient initiatives they look for the extra step beyond that. Valuing employees health, creating a work life balance for the team, anything that places physical or mental health above all else. Even in larger companies sustainability reports we can see entire sections dedicated to people.
The concept of a ‘green’ office will continue to adapt to employee expectations. Anything that leads an organization towards caring for others and the planet is a step in the right direction. We hope to continue seeing this trend of re-prioritized value from all companies!
How HealthQuotes Creates a Green Office
The HealthQuotes team is extremely proud of the green office that we’ve created and adapted over the last two decades. Similar to everyone else we started with reducing our waste and going electronic. Additionally, we quickly noticed how green was beginning to mean more and we loved the direction it was going. We have always valued employees and their health but we wanted to be one step ahead!
Now we are proud to say that we have a surplus of initiatives that support our mental well being and planet at the same time.
The HealthQuotes office is equipped with a Vitamix machine and the building is constantly stocked with fresh fruits, vitamins, proteins, anything you might want for a healthy snack or shake. We’ve also created a strict policy around work life balance. Firstly, we close the office entirely at 1pm on Fridays and employees have to go do something for themselves. With many of our team having families they rely on this time for themselves and get a reset before going into what’s normally not that relaxing of a weekend. We also encourage beyond the typical bare minimum break allotment. If employees need to take a walk or a break to hit peak efficiency then it is fully supported. Finally, we put a focus on mental health. Offering a variety of support wherever necessary. Mental health days or benefits for therapy if needed. Ultimately, we know beyond a doubt that a happy healthy team means a happy healthy company. Start creating a green office environment for your team today!
We’ve also started promoting Manulife’s new Vitality program which rewards individuals with premium discounts for eating and living healthy. We plan on adding this to our own group benefits. Give us a call or check out the details here if you’d like to do the same!