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How To Make Your Commercial Property More Eco-Friendly

We’re all looking for ways to be more environmentally friendly at home and work. We can make many changes to lower our carbon footprint, save water and more, and the results are multiplied in bigger premises such as commercial buildings. We all know about turning lights off when a room is not in use to save electricity. And your office may have already gone paperless. But in this guide, we will share a few switches that can have a considerable impact. These changes are largely one-off switches and only require a little ongoing maintenance to continue seeing the benefits.

 

Save Water With Eco-Conscious Bathrooms

Opt for push taps in the bathrooms to reduce water wastage in your building. Dual flush toilets are also a good way to avoid using more water than necessary. And, of course, be proactive with property maintenance and repairs. Don’t leave leaks untreated. Call a plumber and fix the issue as soon as it arises to avoid ongoing water waste. 

 

Switch To An Energy-Efficient Boiler

A heating system is one of the biggest sources of energy consumption in any building. Swapping an older boiler for a new energy-efficient option will prevent heat loss and wasted energy reducing your energy bills and your carbon footprint. A commercial boiler will need more output than a domestic one, but it is important to choose a suitable model for the space you are heating to avoid overspending. At Kiasu, we can assist you with choosing the right energy-efficient model and commercial boiler installations. Make sure you keep up with boiler servicing and maintenance to maintain efficiency and continue to reap the benefits (and avoid emergency boiler repairs).

 

Use Environmentally Friendly Travel Options

Road transport makes a significant contribution to greenhouse gas emissions. So incentivising employees to take alternative, more eco-friendly travel options is a great way to go green. Cycle-to-work schemes, for example, could make it easier for employees to swap four wheels for two – which will positively impact the environment and their health. 

 

Provide For Electric Car Users

For many, walking or cycling to the office may not be practical. But even for drivers, some options are more eco-friendly than others. We’ve all heard about the environmental benefits of electric vehicles. However, the major hindrance with EVs is accessibility to charging. Admittedly this is far less of an issue than in past years with many charge points throughout the country. But you can do your part to help people make the transition to EVs. EV charging points are surprisingly affordable and a fantastic way to accommodate more eco-friendly travel options.

 

Use Eco-Friendly Products And Suppliers

Finding ways to make eco-friendly changes in your business is incredible. Now it’s time to find other like-minded people. Working with companies that share your love for the planet is a brilliant way to minimise your carbon footprint and more. Suppliers are key to your business’s environmental impact. The initial switch may be a bit time-consuming, but once the change is made, the positive impact will begin to mount up month after month. 

 

Speak To Our Commercial Maintenance Team

At Kiasu Workforce, we deliver property maintenance to commercial buildings nationwide. We have a team of experts available to deliver plumbing and heating services, including some of the eco-friendly solutions discussed above. To learn more about how we can assist with commercial boiler installations, EV charging stations, and more call us on 0208 988 1662

 

Learn More About Commercial Property Management

Explore our blog for more advice on getting the most from your commercial property. We have many insightful guides on property management covering topics such as refurbishment, cleaning, fire safety, and plumbing. Here are a few of our favourite reads:

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How Dirty Is Your Office?

how dirty is your office infographic

Offices and their facilities are some of the most commonly used areas you will find. While you may imagine that most areas within an office are clean, many are dirtier than you may expect. Yes, any office is regularly cleaned and may look clean on the surface. However, many people working in the same area can be a breeding ground for germs. It can create a surprisingly unhygienic environment for all. 

 

What do you think is dirtier, your toilet seat or your office keyboard? Well, today, we’re going to find out. This article will explore how dirty an office can get, and the extra measures you can and should take to ensure your office is as clean as possible. 

 

How dirty is your office?

Many people can’t believe the truth, but the fact is that your office is way filthier than you think! The average workplace is almost 100 times dirtier than a chopping board in your kitchen. A workplace is made up of people who all have their habits and standards of hygiene, meaning the workplace is a breeding ground for all types of germs. As the number of germs and microbes in the workplace has grown in every area, it can be a nightmare to try to keep this clean and manageable.

 

It may surprise you that the average workplace in the UK holds approximately 400x more germs than the toilet seat in your home. The main question that usually comes to mind when people discover this is, “How is that even possible?”. Well, many reasons contribute to this. 

 

Firstly, many workers admit that they don’t wash their hands regularly. What makes this worse is that some workers admit to not washing their hands after going to the toilet! When they reintegrate into the office environment, all of the germs on them spread across the environment. 

 

Other contributing factors are everyday workplace activities that have a significant effect on the cleanliness of the workplace as a whole. Things that are seen as daily activities like eating at your desk and keeping unnecessary items on your desk that need to be binned can allow germs to linger. These items would be acceptable if the workplace was cleaned after each activity. Still, the truth is that this is simply impractical in most situations. 

 

Did you know?

  • Crumbs are one of the 
  • workplace’s most common sources of bacteria.
  • Approximately 1 in 10 workers never clean their keyboards.
  • Approximately 85% of infections sp
    read in the workplace because of uncleaned surfaces.
  • Shockingly, 1 in 3 workers admit to not washing their hands after using the toilet!
  • 1 in 4 people have faecal bacteria on their hands right now.

With these facts being true across countless workplaces in the UK, it is easy to see just how easy it is for germs to take hold.

How to keep your office clean

Now that you’ve heard just how filthy an office can become (even if you can’t always see it), it is essential to understand what can be done to counteract this. Creating a plan to preserve a clean, hygienic working environment is vital. Many basic methods can be used to ensure that workplace germs are kept at a minimum and those hygienic problems are kept at bay. 

 

  • Removing clutter

The first and easiest thing you can do is remove all excess, un-needed items from your desk. When you have unnecessary items strung across your desktop, it allows germs to build up and create a negative environment for you to work in. Removing clutter that isn’t needed from your desk removes areas for germs to breed. As well as this, you create a happier working environment for yourself. 

 

  • Maintain your worktop

Now that you’ve de-cluttered your workplace, it is crucial to keep on top of things to make sure you don’t provide an optimal environment for germs to breed and grow. The best way to do this is to give your desk a quick wipe several times throughout the day and remove any potential germs that may spread throughout the day. 

 

  • Keep windows sparkling

Cleanliness doesn’t only affect your physical health through infection. Certain aspects can also have an impact on your productivity and motivation levels. Natural light is one of the primary sources of productivity in the workplace. If you want to keep workers happy, motivation high and productivity consistent, keeping your windows clean is a small but effective way of achieving this.

 

  • Clean handles & switches

Did you know that germs found on a single door handle or light switch have the potential to pass a virus around a whole office within just one day? With germs that can spread at such an alarmingly rapid rate, it is crucial to regularly wipe down door handles and light switches. In such commonly accessed areas of the office, eliminating the risk posed by hidden bacteria must be an absolute priority. 

 

Want to know more?

If you’d like to know more about the hygienic hazards faced daily in the workplace and what can be done to combat them, get in touch! Our team of experts are on hand to answer any questions you have. Alternatively, you can look at our office cleaning service and how we can help you maintain your workplace, keeping it as hygienic and happy as possible. 

 

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how dirty is your office

What Is Confidential Waste, and How To Dispose Of It Properly

What Is Classed As Confidential Waste?

Confidential waste is any document containing personal information about an individual. Due to the sensitive, private nature of the information – confidential waste disposal is a service most offices require. The documents may contain information about:

  • Staff
  • Clients
  • The general public

It is crucial that confidential waste is disposed of correctly. This information includes:

  • Home address
  • Financial information
  • National Insurance Number
  • Health Records

Confidential waste can also include information that could put a company at risk if read by the public or a competitor. This could consist of any financial data or marketing strategies. Some companies will have a much higher amount of confidential waste than others. For example, healthcare facilities hold a large amount of personal information and also healthcare records.

Why You Must Dispose of Confidential Waste Correctly

Every company must follow laws included in the Data Protection Act 2018; these laws ensure that companies are held responsible for protecting personal information. If a data breach occurs, the company could receive a ‘maximum fine now reaching the higher of €20m (£17.5m) or 4% of the company’s global turnover’.

According to Government records, 90% of large companies and 75% of small businesses in the UK experienced a data breach in just one year! This just proves how important it is to take the protection of confidential data seriously.

There are other reasons why you must dispose of confidential waste, such as preventing security breaches and ensuring the public’s privacy is not violated. It also creates space; hoarding documents in an office can be dangerous, a fire hazard, and a waste of space.

Which Documents are Confidential?

There are too many types of confidential documents to list, but here are a few examples:

  • Payroll Information
  • CV’S
  • Bank Statements
  • Supplier Information
  • Staff Appraisal
  • Healthcare Records
  • ID
  • Contact Details

So, what’s the main thing to consider when deciding if a document is confidential? Does it contain information that relates directly to an individual or a company that is not usually available for the public to see? If your document includes this kind of information, then class it as confidential.

How to Set Up a Confidential Waste Policy

It will help if you put a policy in place, so your staff know how to deal with confidential documents. Some companies must keep information for a specific period due to legal reasons. In this case, you should always have somewhere safe to store the documents before they get destroyed, such as a locked filing cabinet. 

You need to list all confidential documents in your workplace and provide your staff with this information to avoid data breaches. Your policy should also outline where to put waste to be destroyed and how often the waste will be collected.

How to Dispose of Confidential Waste

Shredding

This process is where confidential waste is cut into small pieces and mixed, making reconstruction impossible. You can do shredding in-house if you only have a small number of documents. Shredding is HIPAA approved and great for the environment, as shredded documents can still be recycled.

Burning

This is the only process that can guarantee documents can never be reconstructed. However, this process isn’t possible in most areas due to laws against open fires. Some companies can burn documents if they have an incinerator. Burning is HIPAA approved but is not a popular waste disposal choice.

Soaking 

An effective way to destroy small amounts of documents, but if destroying more than a few pages, you would have to leave the documents for a long time for them to become unreadable. This method is not often used because once soaked, documents are no longer recyclable.

Cutting

This method is only ever used for a small number of documents, as it is time-consuming. The process involves manually cutting through any confidential information, but you must remember to ensure the documents aren’t reconstructable. You must mix up all the waste and dispose of it in separate recycling boxes to do this.

Do You Need a Professional Recycling Service?

As discussed above, you can destroy confidential information in-house, but this is not always the best option or even possible at all. If your company has a high volume of personal documents, you should consider hiring a professional.

Hiring a professional will save you money in the long run, as you will not need to buy suitable equipment. Professionals have had the relevant training and access to the best equipment, ensuring you have peace of mind that your waste has been destroyed properly.

For all your rubbish removal needs in London, give us a call on 020 8988 1662 – our phone lines are open 24/7, so there’s always someone ready to take your call. Alternatively, please e-mail us, we guarantee a speedy reply.

 

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