Saturday, May 17, 2008

Alternative Work is Really, Really Green

I work with companies that embrace alternative work. Alternative, meaning work gets done, but it could happen at any time (after the kids are in bed) or any place (at home, in a cafe, at the office, etc.) This ability to work anywhere and any time is enabled by technology and helps employees juggle personal and professional life. Though workers may give up having an assigned seat, the ability to work in a more flexible way is generally perceived as a net benefit. The benefit for companies adopting alternative work is that they reduce real estate. And they save a lot of money.

Sprint shed 2.4 million square feet of space from 2005 to 2007 and 900,000 square feet will be released in 2008 through their adoption of “work anywhere” environments. This will create an annual savings of $80 million for the company starting in 2009.

American Express has projected annual cost avoids of $17 to $20 million through their initiatives to build high-performance work spaces based on actual occupancy, not headcount.

Here's the green headline here... companies that adopt alternative work are taking on one of the most environmentally beneficial strategies available to them - they are reducing their carbon footprint to begin with.

Alternative work reduces carbon footprint by reducing the amount of resources needed to build larger buildings and to incrementally operate them (energy, water, etc.) AND... they reduce the amount of energy needed to commute to work (note earlier TGW post that employees use twice as much energy commuting than they do occupying their office).

Think about it for your company. In the wise words of Mies van der Rohe, "less is more."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree, flexibility in the work place means a better work/life balance. This in turns means happier staff, better moral and ultimately better for the company.

John
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