When you’re an employee, the company you work for usually takes responsibility for environmental commitments and policies, but as a contractor, you need to set your own green agenda if you want to do your bit for the planet.
Obviously, various clients will have their own green initiatives within their premises for you to adhere to, but what to do the rest of the time? We’ve put together some practical ideas you could implement if you want to be a green contractor.
Recycle in your home office
On the days you work from home, it can be easy to forget about recycling, and everything might just find itself going into the same bin — especially if your wheelie bins are a bit of a hike from your back door. However, many office supply stores now sell small, neat, indoor recycling bins that are ideal for home use, helping you easily separate paper, cardboard, plastic and general waste from each other. So, you can recycle your office waste easily, even when that office is at home.
Buy a reusable cup
If your contractor career sees you travelling quite a bit, whether by car or public transport, you will likely find yourself buying coffee-to-go by the bucket load. But all of those cardboard cups and plastic lids can have a real impact on the environment, so buying a reusable one that you can keep with you and get filled up each time you want to use it can really make a difference. There are lots of fun designs around and many coffee shops will give you a discount for using your own cup.
Ditch the car
While this isn’t possible or cost effective for everyone, if you can, ditch the car whenever possible. If a client is reasonably local, look at public transport options or even think about taking up cycling. The latter will not only help the environment, but it’ll keep you fit too. This one doesn’t have to be a career-long commitment either, you could just change your mode of transport depending on a client’s location.
While we do practically everything on computer now, we still print out a huge amount of stuff: emails, CVs, portfolios and much more. Consider whether you really need to print that email out. Could you just take your tablet to the meeting and show it to the client using that? Or take a look at your portfolio and think about whether you really need a hard copy. You could always set up a fancy online version instead. This will really save on printing (also saving you money) but, on the odd occasion you do need to print something, look at options such as recycled paper.
While we can’t help you with your environmental commitments, we can make sure you’re fully insured as a contractor. Contact the expert team at Kingsbridge on 01242 808740 or find the info you need on our website. You can also find us on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.