THE GREEN OFFICE - Top Tips for Running an Environmentally Aware & Cost-Effective Office.




  • Print all documents on double-sided pages. Do not print draft copies.

  • Cancel junk mail and unwanted publications to reduce the amount of wastepaper you throw away.

  • Avoid overproduction of marketing and publicity material e.g. flyers and catalogues by reviewing distribution lists and regularly updating databases. Communicate such information electronically.

  • Use emails with attachments where possible to reduce printing. Do not print out e-mails unless absolutely necessary.

  • Do not run hard-copy job files alongside electronic job files. Scan signed documents and save.

  • Get rid of that fax machine if you still have one.

  • Reduce confidential waste-paper costs by storing such information securely on your server.

  • Set a target to reduce paper waste over the year and provide staff with feedback on reduction efforts throughout the year.


  • Collect all paper that has already been printed on one side and re-use for scrap/notes/re-print etc.

  • Re-use envelopes wherever possible, especially for sending information internally.

  • Donate surplus card or coloured paper to your local school or nursery.


  • Find details of paper recycling companies in your area and use them where cost-effective to do so. The frequency of collection and cost of recycling will depend on the amount of paper that you generate.

  • Place paper recycling bins in all offices. A good guide is one bin between six staff and one next to each photocopier and printer.

  • Ensure that cleaning staff are in support of the recycling scheme and that emptying the recycling bins is part of their contracted work.

  • Promote the scheme to staff by putting up posters around the offices and on bins explaining the types of paper that can be recycled.

  • Provide staff with on-going feedback about the scheme, including figures on the amount of paper collected and cost savings. Donate to an environmental charity or plant a tree when targets are met.

  • Use 100% recycled paper (with maximum post-consumer waste content) if the quality and colour where good enough as standard and cost effective to do so.

Look out for Top Tip No. 2 tomorrow when we will post information for calculating paper costs,

Please share your suggestions and we’ll share them with our contacts. Together we can improve the natural environment.

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