Climate change has become a major talking point all over the world, with many businesses looking at how to reduce their carbon footprint, as edie reveals.
One major cause for concern is the daily commute, with more cities seeing increased levels of air pollution from the number of cars on the road. As a result, more companies are looking for ways to encourage their employees to commute in a more environmentally sustainable way. Here are a few suggestions on how to do just that.
Encourage the use of public transport
Depending on where your business is based, public transport can give your workers an easier and more cost-effective – not to mention more eco-friendly – way of commuting to the office. Most major cities and towns have public transport hubs, be they for trains or buses.
Consider taking up an office in close proximity to these hubs to encourage more employees to use them. For example, if your business is based in London, you can find well-connected serviced offices in Victoria only yards away from the St. James’s Park station of the London Underground as well as minutes away from the Victoria railway station.
In addition, many public transport providers have schemes in place that allow businesses to provide discounts to employees. Making public transport cheaper and more accessible for employees is key to encouraging them to commute sustainably.
Offer an employee car-sharing scheme
If using public transport to travel to the office isn’t practically possible for many of your workers, consider implementing an employee car-sharing scheme instead.
Using fewer cars to commute obviously has a beneficial effect on the environment, but it can also help reduce costs for both the business and the employee as well as help improve worker relationships. This method can also reduce the number of parking spaces required at the office.
Encourage active transport
Active transport – like cycling, e-biking or walking, as the University of Oxford suggests – is another way to significantly reduce carbon emissions. Incorporating physical activity into the daily commute can also have wide-ranging benefits on the employee, both physically and mentally.
To encourage active transport, it’s important for the business to have the right resources to facilitate it. These can include areas to store bicycles, while having lockers and showers as onsite facilities will help incentivize employees to choose more sustainable methods of commuting. Additionally, consider introducing a financing scheme that enables employees to purchase bicycles.
Depending on what type of business you run, remote working could be a good way to reduce unnecessary traveling. While perhaps not realistic for public-facing industries, many office roles could be performed by employees at home. While this does mean that the camaraderie that comes from working in an office will be missed, moving this work to an online environment can help mitigate the effects on the environment as well as reduce costs.
While these methods will not be applicable for every company and could prove risky, the benefits of switching up the daily commute far outweigh the risks. With the right approach, these methods can not only help the company reduce its carbon footprint but also reduce costs and drastically improve employee wellbeing.