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Are office workers disappointed by lack of sustainability?

A national survey of office-based companies has revealed that the majority of employees feel that their employer is not taking steps to reduce energy consumption or green their office space.

A national survey of office-based companies has revealed that the majority of employees feel that their employer is not taking steps to reduce energy consumption or green their office space.

The findings come from a survey of 500 offices conducted by money saving advice firm Make It Cheaper. 

Nearly half of respondents spent over £1,000 on energy per month. Despite this, 31 per cent of business owners said they were not taking extra measures to reduce energy use, and 18 per cent do not consider energy efficiency when buying new equipment.

Where measures were being implemented, the most popular were closing windows when the heating is on (47 per cent), using energy saving lightbulbs (46 per cent), installing light sensors (37 per cent), using smart meters (29 per cent) and using remote heating controls (28 per cent).

Dissatisfied workforce

However, employees were much more negative about the eco-credentials of their office space. A much bigger 67 per cent thought they their employers were not taking steps to consume less energy.

The findings show that there can often be a disparity between the green measures business owners think they are implementing, and the measures employees actually see taking place.

Wider benefits

Separate research from the World Green Building Council shows that greener offices mean a happier, healthier and more productive workforce.  

In other words, as well as saving money on their bottom line, companies that prioritise their eco credentials and communicate them effectively can also benefit from increased employee satisfaction and workforce retention.

Nick Heath, head of energy insight at Make It Cheaper, said: “There are many steps business owners can take to help create an energy efficient workplace. Conducting energy audits, switching to LED bulbs and rewarding eco-friendly staff are just some of the ways to help promote green culture in the office.”

A simple government-backed guide to energy efficiency for SMEs is available here.