Expert Advice

Green thinking makes good business sense

B2B Editor1 May 2013

According to recent studies (including by Accenture) [1], the overwhelming majority of business leaders see sustainable business practices as fundamental to the growth of their companies. And for good reason: factors such as spiralling energy and resources costs, along with increased emphasis on corporate social responsibility and other factors are combining to make sustainability a ‘must have’ for business.

The good news for companies? Embracing sustainability can help you cut your operating costs.

Reducing your energy consumption, for example, has a direct impact on the bottom line. Since Information Technology (IT) is one of the largest consumers of energy within a business, you can make a significant difference by streamlining your IT processes: especially your printing processes, which typically consumes the most energy and resources within IT2.

For example, older printing devices draw far more power than you may realise. Recent advances, such as Ricoh technology that goes beyond Auto-Off/Sleep and Energy Saver mode, with the Green ModeActivated program and exceeding Energy Star compliance requirements can make quite a difference to your power usage – and your carbon footprint.

In addition, one of the key benefits of moving to a managed model- such as Ricoh Managed Document Services (MDS) – is that it can directly lower your energy bills.

At the heart of the MDS model, Ricoh sets a baseline for your systems – including hardware, supplies and usage pattern – with strategies for improving environmental sustainability targets – usage, consumables, paper and overall CO2 footprint.

MDS features also include streaming documents to the right printer locations (to optimise your ink usage), using both sides of the paper as well as precise Energy Saver Timers that reduce energy consumption without compromising the availability of your devices.

Going one step further, you can develop a roadmap for making document management part of your environmental initiatives. The design can include both hardware and process recommendations, with projections for the ROI you’ll achieve through cost savings and, potentially, through productivity gains.

Whether you want to start with firm targets or a single project, the important principal is that environmental initiatives can save you money.Once you start implementing sustainability goals, though, you might also discover that your projects help boost your company’s image in the eyes of employees and stakeholders. Who knows? The environment could even give your business a competitive edge.

[1] “A New Era of Sustainability: UN Global Compact – Accenture CEO Study- 2010,” events/8.1/UNGC_Accenture_CEO_Study_2010.pdf 2 Ricoh Group Sustainability Report (Environment 2011)