Get started with waste sorting

3 tips: Involve, motivate, and follow up - this is the best way to achieve your goals

Affaldssortering i en virksomhed

Get started

Prepare a waste solution implementation plan

We already do it in our homes - i.e., sort our waste. Now, the time has come to do it at work! We need to bring our household habit into our workplace. This will require a lot of both employees and employers and the all important part is how the new system is communicated to the organization as well as its arrangement and organization.

Here, you will find a handful of tips on how to handle the new reality at your place of work. Some of these tips are more relevant for larger organizations while other are more relevant for small or medium-sized organizations.

www.mst.dk 

From boring duty to pure pleasure

1. Organization

Assign waste administrators

Appoint an employee to be responsible for your waste solution and with primary responsibility for the implementation of your waste sorting. You could also consider appointing ambassadors and train them to become ”waste experts”. Let them be in charge of training their colleagues.

Include waste sorting in your onboarding process

Incorporate waste sorting in your onboarding process for new appointments, in your Employee Handbook, and/or in your general workplace guidelines. 

Delegate the emptying duty

If your organization does not have staff whose duties include emptying waste bins, you could assign the responsibility for emptying the bins at certain points during the day, weekly, etc. to one or more employees. Assigning the responsibility to them will reduce the work burden and give them a feeling of added ownership.

Have your service staff lend a hand

Your waste collector will be able to offer advice on how to implement your waste sorting system as optimally as possible. Make sure to start a good dialogue with your waste collector to establish an efficient partnership. At large companies, it can be a good idea to have your cleaning and/or service providers assist with the implementation.

Do you know the 20/20 rule?

Well no, so let us explain.

If you need to implement waste sorting in the office, we recommend using this rule:

20 people for one waste solution
20 meters walking distance to the waste solution

Put another way: If you have 20 employees together in an open office environment, the waste station must be placed a maximum of 20 meters from their place. Otherwise, you risk that the employees will not use the solution correctly. They have to change their behavior from throwing their paper in a paper bin right under the desk, to having to get up and walk a little to get rid of it. That is why we use the 20/20 rule as a recommendation to our customers. Then you will be well on your way to sorting waste.

The most used sortings in an office environment or small kitchens are food waste, plastic, paper and residual waste.

Affaldssortering på skole med løbende børn

Waste sorting is cool

2. Decor/layout

Identity the required number of bins

Identity which types and how many types of waste you generate at various locations and arrange for the same number of waste bins.

Involve your employees in bin locations

Involve the relevant employees to ensure their specific area of the workplace will be set up according to their specific needs. This will ensure meaningful waste bin locations and make it intuitive to use the bins in the course of the workday.

Use unambiguous labeling

Ensure that all waste systems are fitted with pictograms to make it easy to decode what goes in which bin. 

Make purchasing wasy for branch offices

If you are a big company, you could prepare a list of the various waste bins and the various sizes which you company has chosen to use. This will make it easier for branch offices to order bins according to their needs. 

Make waste sorting meaningful

3. Communication

Have management take the lead

Even if you have assigned a waste administrator, it may be a good idea to have senior management to be the first to inform the staff about the sorting system. This could make your employees more motivated to use the system.

Do not let the waste sorting guide collect dust

Relevant information about the sorting system and the different types of waste should hang on the wall close to your waste system.

Issue monthly reminders

It is important to continuously remind your employees to use the waste sorting system and how to sort their waste. And you could use internal newsletters and/or staff meetings to inform them about new measures or changes. And remember to encourage your staff to ask questions, all types of questions should be welcome. 

Collect data about your waste sorting

Your waste collector can probably provide you with monthly or quarterly statistics on your waste sorting. This will allow you to monitor your progress in terms of generating less residual waste. These figures should be communicated across the company and used as a basis for shared goals.

Typical questions and answers

You should sort your waste for several reasons. With waste sorting, less waste goes to the incineration plant. Also, with waste sorting, we can recycle far more materials and thereby reduce CO2 emissions by reducing the need to manufacture new materials.  

Waste amounts can be reduced in many ways. For example, you can reuse paper to fill up cardboard boxes when shipping goods, you can buy recycled coffee cups instead of disposable cups, buy more used items instead of new items, opt for products with less packaging, compost food waste instead of throwing it away, etc.

The organic waste is recycled to extract biogas, which is used for environmentally friendly electricity, heat or fuel.

Want to know more?

Ask our enterprise waste sorting system expert.

Carsten Jansen

Carsten Jansen

Founder

+45 2830 5000

cj@bicasolutions.dk

Want to learn about solutions that make waste sorting easier?

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