Going Green: Sustainability in the Workplace

OnePiece Work
April 16, 2021
OnePiece Work

When it comes to office design, many companies are now putting sustainability at the top of their list. For 62% of executives, staying competitive means catering to an eco-conscious workforce and focusing on energy-efficient design in their distributed workspaces.

New trends in sustainability are transforming the office, where integrating new technologies and green tools can attract a happier, healthier workforce.

As workspace experts, we’ve compiled a list of tips for creating a greener workplace:

Switch to eco-friendly office snacks

Your office pantry and snack selection can have a significant impact on your waste output. Instead of buying generic, pre-packaged snacks from the grocery store, opt for a more sustainable snack subscription service such as Naturebox, FruitGuys, or SnackNation. These services take the guesswork out of purchasing snacks and are delivered right to your office. 

Encourage biking or walking to the office

Prior to the pandemic, American workers spent an average of 47 hours per year commuting in rush hour traffic. To combat the time, gas, and energy wasted on commuting, encourage your employees to bike or walk to a nearby flexible office space. Having a productive workspace closer to home will not only reduce your carbon footprint but also increase productivity and improve work/life balance for your team.

Use non-toxic cleaning products

Maintaining a safe, clean office environment is a top priority. Many standard cleaning products use harsh chemicals and create fumes that are harmful to the environment, as well as to your office-goers. So, consider requesting eco-friendly commercial cleaning products from your janitorial management team for cleaning your office and sanitizing high-touch points. 

Minimize single-use plastics

With the rollout of the plastic straw ban in California, most of us have acquired a few reusable water bottles and mugs. Encourage your employees to bring their own water bottles and mugs instead of using disposable cups at the office. For those in need of a reusable bottle, our close partner Larq creates high-quality, self-cleaning water bottles that keep your water cold and your coffee hot.

At OnePiece Work, we have a Flowater machine in every office. This allows our members to refill their bottles all day, knowing that they are doing good for the environment (and their health!).

Switch to energy-efficient lighting and HVAC

To decrease office energy waste, energy-efficient lighting and HVAC systems are effective options. There are many ways to improve the sustainability of these systems, including:

  • Using fans in place of air conditioning whenever possible. 
  • Having the HVAC ducts and filters changed regularly for improved efficiency. 
  • Installing motion-sensor lighting to reduce energy waste in low-traffic areas of the building.
  • Seek out office spaces, such as our Foster City office, that have earned the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification. 

Add live plants to your office design

Many popular office plants, including peace lilies, snake plants, and pothos vines, act as natural air purifiers and boost office sustainability. One study showed that a single healthy tree can cool a building by the same amount as 20 air conditioning units working for 20 hours a day! 

Utilize e-waste recycling and collection

For tech companies, building for the future requires updating and replacing old electronic equipment to keep everyone functioning at their best. Fortunately, there are many ways to promote eco-conscious practices at work:

  • Holding regular e-waste donation drives
  • Posting notices and sending emails about how to easily recycle old materials
  • Encouraging trade-ins or donations of used tech (in good condition) to local secondhand facilities 

Looking for more ways to make an impact?
Los Angeles: UCLA Sustainability is offering a FREE business assistance program to help you “Go Green” and become more efficient and sustainable.
San Francisco Bay Area: The Sustainable Bay Area Network is a causal association of “sustainable community” organizations around the San Francisco Bay Area – a network of organizations that share a name and a common purpose.


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