With the rise of remote and hybrid work options, it may seem difficult to begin transforming your workspace into an environmentally friendly haven. However, with a bit of effort and planning, you can find ways to adjust your team’s daily routine and your company policies to make positive change.

This Earth Day, take some time to evaluate your current environmental initiatives and start laying the groundwork for new ones. And if you’re not quite sure where to start, here are some ideas for you!


You’ve probably heard the old saying, “You can’t change the world, but you can make a dent.” But what does that truly mean? The answer is simple: you are choosing to make small changes that will add up in the grand scheme of things.

And although your minor changes may not seem like much in the big scope of things, they are the start of change, and they encourage your staff and business partners to do the same. With this in mind, it’s time to start leading by example and making a dent in your workplace with these eco-friendly office initiatives today.


The US Department of Energy estimates that 22.5 kilowatt-hours (KWh) are consumed per square foot of floor in most commercial buildings. This includes refrigeration, equipment, lighting, heating, and cooling.   These are the ideal places to start when trying to reduce your yearly energy consumption.

For lighting specifically, there are many ways to take a more eco-friendly approach. One way is to encourage your team to open up windows or blinds to let in natural light during the day to cut the cost of having lights on when they are not needed. However, another highly popular method is to switch from the traditional incandescent light bulb to the energy-efficient lighting options currently on the market. By doing this, you can save energy and reduce your overall carbon emissions throughout the year exponentially.

As for heating and cooling, roughly 117 million metric tons of carbon dioxide are released into the air each year from air conditioning units alone. Considered the most harmful element of the average office space, these air conditioning units may provide employees with temperate indoor climates but could also lead to significant environmental damage over time.

A great way to counteract this is to encourage your employees to use solar-powered fans or bring jackets in cooler months, rather than relying on the central heating and cooling system for comfort. Even reducing your yearly AC usage by half could make a significant impact both in your community as well as the earth as a whole.

Related: Sustainability and FSC Certification - Why It Matters


Perhaps, you are looking for a way to refresh your brand. Encouraging eco-friendly initiatives can be a great part of that process. Review your current office suppliers and find environmentally friendly ones that provide similar pricing, availability, and products.

Be aware, however, that countless suppliers and manufacturers have begun to claim to be eco-friendly when they are not. To tell if a company is really “green,” you will want to look for specific claims they make, check for commitment to causes locally and internationally, ask about it in conversation, and study their packaging. By using these methods to discern the eco-friendly suppliers that are right for you and your business, you are sure to always get the most reliable and green supplies on the market.


Although it may not seem like a major problem, the clutter in your office actually can affect your focus. With a minimalist workplace, you can stay organized, only use the bare essentials, and promote a certain level of frugality within your team.

For this step, you may want to begin by going through the office and picking out the unnecessary or rarely used items. You can turn this into a full day with the team and deliver these items to a local shelter or thrift store to help out your community and build a stronger team relationship in the process. If there is any unused office furniture, you can also contact a re-seller to come and pick it up for a profit.

Next, go through actual supplies and make cuts accordingly so you can remove any unnecessary parts of your current work routine. For instance, if you have printed off business projects that could easily be digitized for years now, digitize them and remove this harmful step in your workday.


Did you know that NASA uses plants to improve indoor air quality in its space stations? With this said it’s no wonder why many scientists recommend indoor plants in the office for better air quality and improvement of the environment over time.

This Earth Day, do the same by encouraging your team to bring in some of the most popular plants for indoor air quality improvement: ferns, succulents, palms, bamboo, ivy, lilies, and chrysanthemums. These plants will not only bring more vibrance into your workspace but will also help the air quality and the environment as they grow and flourish. It is also a great way to grow as a team if you give each employee a day to water the plants.

Related: Gifts That Give Back: Eco-Friendly Swag


Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, remote work has become more accessible than ever. Instead of enduring daily commutes, employees now simply log in from their home workstations, seamlessly connecting to the network and commencing work from the comfort of their own space. This not only slashes yearly gas consumption but also significantly curtails carbon emissions, water usage, and electricity consumption.

What was once deemed unattainable has now become reality, thanks to the newest advancements in technology especially the rise in virtual meeting platforms. These innovations have bridged the gap between remote and on-site teams, ensuring seamless collaboration while safeguarding company data. Embracing remote and hybrid work models not only enhances productivity and work-life balance but also champions sustainability in the modern workforce.


Composting is not for every office but, if your team promises to throw their biodegradable items in this bin, you could create a composting initiative that is sure to be better for the environment than simply throwing these items in the trash.

The key to instilling these composting methods in your office is learning how to compost at work and teaching your team the importance of composting before starting. In doing this, you can gauge your team’s interest, get them excited about the new method, ensure no outer debris accidentally wind up in your composting bin and easily create an eco-friendly office initiative.

Related: How Brainstorming Can Foster a Creative Office Culture


Just as telecommuting reduces the carbon emissions and gas usage of cars, riding a bike or walking to work can help the environment, as well. For companies that need their workforce in-house, and telecommuting is not an option—this is where biking or walking comes into play.

Although bicycling and walking may not be as convenient for your staff, there are multiple ways to encourage biking and walking over driving that are sure to get the attention of your team. For instance, some apps will pay for exercise - a great incentive to walk or bike. 

Green initiatives can be implemented positively and excitingly, along with incentives to motivate your team along the way. And if for some reason biking or walking to your office location isn’t feasible, you can always incorporate a carpooling initiative instead.


Perhaps one of the most obvious concepts on this list, beginning a recycling program is a great way to create an eco-friendly office. Recycling plays a huge role in the fate of our environment and, in many cases, recyclable materials are simply thrown into the trash bins and sent to landfills where they will emit carbon and other greenhouse gases for years to come.

To stop your team from being a part of this ever-growing problem, try creating three different trash cans in the office for different materials: glass, recyclables, and actual trash. With this in mind, use these three bins to promote recycling this Earth Day in the office, and know you are helping to raise this recycling percentage one person at a time.

Although the world is exponentially larger than one office building and one office manager, it takes small ideas to create the biggest impact. This Earth Day, with the help of these eco-friendly office practices and your employees, you can rest assured knowing you and your team are making a difference and helping the environment every step of the way.  In honor of Earth Day, Ironmark’s digital marketing team is producing a series of articles on sustainability, make sure to follow us on social media and subscribe for weekly marketing insights delivered straight to your inbox! 

If you are interested in other ways to go green from print to branded merchandise, reach out to our team! We can’t wait to talk sustainability with you.

Talk to the Print Experts!

Written by Andrew Clark

Similar Articles