Why Should Your Business Consider a Waste Audit
A waste and recycling audit could be just what your business needs to boost its eco-friendliness. Not only does a waste audit make sure that your business is as environmentally-friendly as possible, but it can also be used to identify business inefficiencies and overspending. Here's what you need to know.
The Key Benefits of a Waste Audit
A waste audit isn't just good for a business: it's good for the world. Here are a few core benefits to a waste audit:
- Save money on your purchasing. If your business is throwing out a lot of goods, such as expired food products, it's likely purchasing too much. You may never know the full breadth of what is being thrown out without conducting an audit: consider a fast food restaurant in which unopened ketchup packets are being given out and then thrown into the trash.
- Recover money through recycling. By encouraging your employees to recycle more frequently, you can also recapture revenue. Most recycling programs will pay you money for goods.
- Meet certification standards. Certifications such as LEED often require that you have some waste management program in place, as it's a core part of being efficient and green.
- Improve your regulatory compliance. For the purposes of regulatory compliance and grants, you often need to be able to show that your waste management processes are both efficient and not overly wasteful.
If you want to run an efficient, green office, you need a waste audit.
Conducting a Waste Audit
A waste audit involves locating items that are thrown out that may not actually be "waste," items that could be reused, recycled or perhaps not even purchased at all. Up to 70% of what your business is currently throwing out could still have a use in them, and therefore could also help you reduce your expenses.
Conduct a waste audit by:
- Creating a team who will be responsible for the project. It's important that someone be directly accountable for the waste project for it to be handled efficiently and successfully.
- Setting aside time for the project. Auditing usually requires an entire week in total, but you can sometimes spread that week over other times (such as choosing random days to pull for the audit). The project itself will take longer because of the analysis involved.
- Going through the waste. Your waste auditing team should set aside waste during the project to go through it, categorizing it based on recycled materials, overages, and reusable materials.
- Analyze and react to the results. If items are being thrown out that should be recycled, your recycling initiatives need to improve: you may need to add boxes so your employees can more easily recycle. If overages are being thrown out, you may need to revise your purchasing.
At Central Kentucky Fiber Resources, we're dedicated to helping businesses improve their sustainability and their recycling. Contact Central Kentucky Fiber Resources to find out more.