Is your office going green?

May 12, 2011, 11:55 PM GMT+0

Nearly half the UK’s office workers (47%) said their offices have actively become greener as a result of the economic situation, as staff put more effort into recycling, turning off unused lights and saving on the heating bill, an online national survey for office products manufacturer Avery’s third annual ‘Green Office Week’ has revealed.

Nearly six out of ten workers (57%) believe a greener workplace has more chance to save money, while 52% accept making the office more environmentally friendly is a shared responsibility between staff, management and the government equally.

  • 69% of office workers said that they had recycled paper in the office
  • 67% said that they had turned off computer equipment and machinery when not in use
  • 61% said that they switched off unnecessary lighting
  • While 48% said that they favoured double-sided rather than single-sided printing
  • 42% said that they had re-used cardboard boxes
  • 22% had turned down the heating or air conditioning
  • 20% had chosen more environmentally friendly office products such as recycled stationery

However, despite this, only 17% of respondents said their office was ‘very or completely green’. Only two per cent said their office was ‘as green as possible’ and more than a quarter, 28%, said their office was ‘not very green’ or not at all green.

A number of factors prevent people being greener in the office.

  • 24% of office workers highlighted a lack of encouragement as a reason why themselves and colleagues were not greener in the office
  • 19% said there was too much effort involved
  • 18% referred to cost
  • 16% blamed a lack of information on how to go about it

Nicky Amos, an expert in Corporate Social Responsibility, supported the findings, agreeing that, although there are some who are still not doing as much as they could, ‘more and more office workers are behaving in an environmentally sound and more efficient manner. This survey [also] reinforces what many companies are finding - that a greener office can help the bottom line.’

See the survey details and full results here

Avery’s third annual Green Office Week is an award-winning initiative designed to address some of these concerns and encourage office workers to spring into action and adopt practical ways to help the environment.

Between Monday 9 and Friday 13 May, a series of daily tips can be found at along with downloadable resources to help make workplaces greener.