Green buildings offer many benefits to their employees and the community such as reduced utility bills, a smaller carbon footprint and lower water and energy consumption. Interestingly, these benefits only tell half the story. According to research from Ernst & Young and the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship, there are many overlooked benefits of a sustainable workplace. Let’s take a look at some of them.
Increased Cash Flow
The report found that green companies that conduct sustainability reporting have higher cash flows compared to companies that don’t. One reason why this may be is because green buildings have the potential for new and less expensive sources of capital. Second, investors prefer to invest in companies that are sincere and straightforward about their goals. Finally, sustainability is an indication that the company is of a high quality. If they can think outside the box in terms of building practices, operations and processes, this can extend to other parts of the business as well.
More Loyalty from Employees
Businesses today are always looking for new ways to increases employee loyalty and productivity, but who would have thought that it could be as easy as being green? The above survey also took a look at employee loyalty and found that more than 30% of those working for green companies had an increased sense of loyalty. These numbers can be increased further with proactive communication and a joined responsibility to the environment.
Another benefit to maintaining a green work environment is that employees tend to be healthier. Some companies that have implemented energy-efficient upgrades have found that their employees suffer from less allergies and fewer headaches. Imagine the productivity your business would have if employees took less time off work and felt better when they were there.
Simple Ways to Go Green
So what are some of the ways that businesses can turn green? Many of the changes are simple and include:
- Installing window film on all windows
- Switching to post-consumer waste paper products
- Using biodegradable cleaners
- Switching to CFL or LED lights
- Replacing outdated appliances
- Requesting an energy audit
- Switching to alternative energy sources
- Recycling products
Making sustainable improvements in the workplace has endless benefits, including having a higher market value. Fortunately, many updates are easy and inexpensive to make and may allow your business to qualify for tax incentives.