Going Green – Making Your Workplace More Sustainable and Eco-friendly 

Sustainable business practices are no longer merely an option in today’s market. In fact, these days, businesses that adopt a more eco-friendly way of operating find themselves at the front of the pack in their subsequent market. Not only do consumers prefer to support environmentally conscious businesses, but being more sustainable also benefits both your bottom line and the well-being of your employees. It seems doing good is good business. 

Fortunately, adopting sustainable practices is your workplace now easier and more cost-effective than ever. You’ll be surprised to find that even small changes can pack a powerful punch. We’ve got some tips on ways to get started. 

Opt for Recycled Office Products 

Paper waste is a huge problem that is often overlooked simply because we completely take it for granted and, as a result, underestimate how much damage it actually does. Paper waste accounts for a significant portion of solid waste found in landfills and contributes to deforestation, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions. Thus, reducing paper waste and implementing practical measures to decrease it is not only an act of environmental awareness but also a crucial responsibility. It also helps to cut your company costs.  

It might be impossible to eliminate paper entirely, though, which is why if you have to use it, use it responsibly. Make it a company policy to reuse your paper whenever you can. And print double-sided whenever possible. When you DO purchase paper, make sure you’re purchasing recycled paper.  

Recycled paper 

While you’re at it, when you need to stock up on other office products, opt for recycled versions of those as well.    

Use Environmentally Friendly Cleaning Products 

It really should be a no brainer to use environmentally friendly cleaning products. Conventional cleaning products can emit volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere, which, when mixed with other pollutants, exacerbates air pollution. They often contain irritants that trigger allergies, and even those without allergies can suffer respiratory problems. In fact, frequent use of bleach has been linked to Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). That’s the same air your employees and customers are breathing in.  

However, by making the switch to sustainable cleaning products, you can minimize your impact on the environment since the ingredients are usually biodegradable, thus causing no harm to the ecosystem. Therefore, eco-friendly cleaning products are a safer alternative, especially for individuals who experience adverse reactions to standard cleaning products. 

Also, in keeping with trying to minimize paper consumption, consider using inexpensive, eco-friendly alternatives to items like paper towels, such as microfiber towels and cloths.  

Clear the Air 

It might not be the first thing people think of when it comes to creating a greener office environment, but air purifiers should be on your list of ways to create a more sustainable and eco-friendly workspace. They do a fantastic job of improving indoor air quality by ridding the office space of indoor pollutants that cause all kinds of respiratory illnesses and allergies. A cleaner office environment benefits your employees, which also benefits your business.  

Another way to purify the air is to add more plants to your office space. Besides serving as an aesthetic addition, they can significantly decrease the carbon emissions in your workspace and function as a natural air purifier. As a note, while all plants contribute to cleaner air, certain species (like Spider Plants, Peace Lilies, English Ivy, and Bamboo Palms) are particularly effective in this regard. 

Green Your Breakroom  

Reusable plates, cups, and silverware are the gold standard when it comes to being green in the kitchen, but those are also more costly, and some offices simply don’t have ample storage space or even a dedicated breakroom. If you can’t go with reusable and have to opt for one-time-use products, at least go with those that are compostable and/or recyclable, such as those made by Eco-Products.  

Invest in Pre-Owned Office Furniture 

Want to cover the last two steps of the recycling triangle in one fell swoop? Buy pre-owned office furniture! Buying used is an excellent way to make your office more eco-friendly while also saving money, which makes it especially advantageous for small businesses or startups. Purchasing slightly used office furniture provides a significant cost advantage because items are available for 50% to 90% off the normal retail price. 

LAOP has traditionally offered a variety of ‘lightly used’ office furniture, including desks, chairs, modular systems, conference tables, file cabinets, and more. These pieces are demos and nearly new items that have undergone a personal inspection and approval process by our staff, ensuring that only furniture pieces suitable for personal use are stocked.  



If your company doesn’t already recycle, now’s the perfect time to put recycling protocols in place. Although recycling is widely recognized as a positive practice, there remains a great deal of uncertainty regarding the specific materials that can be appropriately placed in the recycling bin. By implementing a system of clearly defined labeling that differentiates between different types of waste and what goes where, organizations can empower their staff to become effective and informed environmental advocates. 

Also, WHERE you put your recycling bins affects whether people recycle or not. Putting recycling receptables inside breakrooms, inside entrances, and outside bathrooms helps make recycling easy for everyone who walks through your doors. The easier you make it, the more likely people will do it. 

More Habits to Tweak  

There are also plenty of other small changes you can implement in your day-to-day actions that can have a positive effect on how eco-friendly your business is. 

For example, energy usage factors heavily into your eco footprint. There are plenty of ways to minimize your energy consumption (which is not only good for the environment, but also for your bottom line). One way is turning off all electronics at the end of the day. Take it one step further and unplug what doesn’t need to stay plugged in overnight. Phantom power (which is also known as standby power) is a real thing, and it adds unnecessary costs to your overall energy bill. If it doesn’t NEED to be plugged in, unplug it when you aren’t using it.  

A few other small changes to consider:  

  • Invest in energy-efficient lightbulbs and smart power strips 
  • Buy certain items (particularly nonperishables) in bulk to minimize deliveries and packaging 
  • If possible, minimize the need for artificial lighting by making use of natural light wherever you can to (natural light also improves employee well-being, by the way) 
  • Keep an eye on that thermostat and keep the temperature at a comfortable level to avoid turning your office into a human refrigerator and money guzzler 

Buy Local! 

The call to buy local has gained momentum, as this practice not only helps sustain nearby businesses, but also mitigates the negative effects of shipping and distribution, such as harmful emissions.  

At LAOP, we understand the value of our local community and why it’s so important to ‘buy local’. For over four decades, we have been serving the community of New Orleans and beyond with exceptional office supplies that are both affordable and top-notch in quality. As a local company that both lives and works within the area, we are passionate about supporting our fellow neighbors and contributing to the local economy through our services.  

We care about our community. And part of caring about our community is caring about the world we are creating through our actions. LAOP provides the products and services to help our customers reduce waste, conserve resources, and adopt a more sustainable, eco-conscious way of doing business.  

As a business based in New Orleans, we are acutely aware of the environmental challenges our part of the world faces. Helping companies in their pursuit of creating a more sustainable business model and office setup is just one of the many ways we can do our part to help our beautiful city and the amazing people in it. 

Reach out to us today for all your office needs!

2nd April 2024, Louisiana Office Products,  Office Furniture, Office Supplies