Print without green guilt: making environmentally sustainable print choices work for your workplace 

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July 4, 2019

Green is the new black.

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As we learn more about our impact as humans on the environment, individuals and businesses alike are being encouraged to become more environmentally sustainable, by reducing waste.

Building a sustainable company is about creating long-term financial value, actively working to reduce your impact, creating positive change for employees, customers and communities, and understanding how these three elements are connected to each other.

And there’s no doubt that in the past five years in particular, businesses have become more sustainably focussed to the core of their business operations - not simply because it’s the latest trend, but also to create long term benefits for their customers, their business, and of course, the environment.

While many businesses are a long way from ‘paperless’, the good news is that every bit helps. Just small improvements in your management of printing efficiency and reduction of waste can  ensure that your critical paper-based business activities are delivered with improved efficiency, and without any additional cost to the business or the environment.

The answer: Streamlining. Here are four simple steps to improving your printing efficiencies and environmental sustainability, without compromising your business needs:  

1. Streamline your internal business processes

Start by looking at your total current printing needs - and compare this to what you actually need. Consider doing an internal audit of all of your internal business printing with the environment in mind to see if there’s a ‘better way’. And you might just find that you improve your business processes along the way.

For example, when reviewing your internally distributed documentation:

  • where can you distribute the document digitally and use the mark-up function for multiple edits? Do you have cloud-based or shared file services to support this?
  • can you use online editing software in lieu of physical print outs for people to edit and sign? Do you have access to basic software tools to support this - such as Adobe Acrobat Reader and Docusign?
  • Do you issue hard-copy communication (such as invoices) to your clients? Have you considered asking them whether they would prefer receiving their communication digitally?
  • Do you have multiple in-house printers which could best be reduced by centralised systems, to improve your tracking and streamline your service requirements?

2. Streamline your in-house print management

Implementing smarter print management practices, with a little setup and internal process updates, can simply improve your print management practices. For example, using ‘pull printing’, with something like a user ID code at the point of printing, will reduce paper waste in the organisation (and help you to track usage by department, or even user).

3. Streamline your outsourced print management

Print management is essentially the management of various print tasks - from brochure and flyer printing through to signage and direct marketing printing and distribution. It can also include management of the data for print distribution, as well as warehousing and stock holding data management for your printed materials. Outsourcing to an organisation such as DMC Group allows your business visibility and control of your printing, and ultimately help you save money (no more boxes of unused annual reports under the PA’s desk!) and boost productivity of your team. Managed print also helps you improve environmental sustainability and document security.

4. Streamline your suppliers

Because not everybody is doing it, but we all should. And by demanding change, your business will be part of the change.

Check the green credentials of all of your suppliers, to see what they’re doing to reduce their impact on the environment, and essentially improve the CO2 emissions of your supply chain. For more information on supporting the Low Carbon Economy, visit http://noco2.com.au/low-carbon-economy/

By reducing your impact on the environment for today, you can improve your impact on your customers and communities for tomorrow and beyond.  

Improve your print sustainability with DMC Group

DMC Group is proudly one of the few Australian marketing services agencies that can produce all of your marketing materials 100% carbon neutral.  Our sustainable business practices focus on reducing and offsetting the effect we have on the environment. We partner with the Carbon Reduction Institute to monitor and offset our, and our clients, carbon emissions. Contact us about how we can help you become part of the Low Carbon Economy through reducing the environmental impact of your print.


Further reading/ Resources:

https://www.tektonikamag.com.au/index.php/2018/10/17/5-sustainable-printing-practices-every-business-should-follow/

https://www.rkblack.com/blog/posts/view/47/12-easy-ways-to-reduce-printing-costs

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