According to a survey carried out by Every Can Counts, a drinks can recycling programme, the greatest challenge encountered when implementing office recycling initiatives is staff understanding.

The survey revealed that nearly a quarter of businesses said their organisation struggled with communicating how and why to recycle to employees to create lasting behaviour change.

The research, which investigated attitudes to recycling in the workplace, also revealed that over half of the businesses running a recycling programme were motivated to do so by environmental concerns. Almost 20% of employers with a scheme in place cited cost saving over regular waste disposal as a motivation for starting recycling.

With many organisations working towards sustainability objectives, including zero waste to landfill targets, the research demonstrates that businesses would benefit from greater support to help achieve their environmental goals.

In response Every Can Counts has launched an online information hub designed to help organisations and individuals increase recycling in their workplace. The hub provides information and advice on setting up or reinvigorating a recycling scheme, along with communications resources to help with promotion to staff and customers.

The site also details case studies of organisations including Emap and Land Securities and provides advice on employee and customer engagement. The latest is from Jaguar Land Rover who has been using the Every Can Counts programme for the past 18 months at three of its UK sites.

Every Can Counts director Rick Hindley said: “Our experience tells us that putting a recycling box in an office doesn’t constitute a recycling programme, you have to educate people how to use it.

“Successful recycling and lasting behaviour change requires regular communication to remind staff how, what and where to recycle. With the right resources, workplaces can easily encourage long-term behaviour change among the workforce.”

More detail on the recycling online information hub can be found here

Maxine Perella

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