Green initiatives are included in many business plans for 2013 and beyond. For the field service industry, environmental programs can be a bit more challenging. Employees are often out of the office, communications can be difficult, and traditional business practices can be a challenge to change.
But green initiatives are worthwhile for most field service operations in several areas:
Paper reduction is one of the best approaches for businesses to participate in green initiatives. Instead of writing up work orders and requests, businesses should enter the information into an automated system. This will not only reduce the use of paper, but it will also improve productivity and quality levels by having information entered and interpreted only once with little risk of losing a piece of paper.
Print management is another type of paper reduction effort but it also takes into consideration the expense of printers including toner, maintenance, and paper. Too often offices will print multiple copies of information when all of the data could be sent and displayed on a computer screen. Wise use of printers is a smart step to help the environment.
Energy use can be reduced by investing in devices that are more energy efficient. Older monitors and large desktop computers can consume a large amount of electricity. By replacing those devices with laptops or tablet computers your business will use less electricity.
Productivity is not easily quantifiable as a green initiative, but by doing more with less, your business is definitely helping the environment as a whole. The more jobs completed per day, the greater efficiency your business will have.
Recommending green options to customers is a very helpful way to contribute to the environment. From more energy efficient HVAC or appliances to earth-friendly pipes and wiring, your business can make recommendations that will help your customers to help the environment.
Trash contributes to overused landfills and more expensive sanitation services. Implementing policies and purchases that use environmentally friendly packing paper and limiting the amount of items that are disposed of can reduce the trash that your company contributes to landfills while also making the most out of items that may have otherwise been discarded.
Reducing fuel consumption is by far the most beneficial green initiative for field service companies. By utilizing software that optimizes routing by including fuel expenses in the calculations, field service businesses can reduce their fuel expenses as well as their carbon footprint. Also allowing field technicians to begin their day from a specific starting point instead of driving to the office will reduce the amount of fuel used. With the right dispatch software in place the field technicians can be routed to their nearest job based on the location where they check in.
Going green does not have to be a radical change. Instead, making some practical decisions on ways to save money can also be considered an environmentally friendly move for your business. For your business planning in 2013 consider a few small steps towards a greener business, and your budget will benefit as well.