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recycling

recycling

Our customers welcome recycling opportunities

Alongside improvements to facilities, recycling roadshows have proven to be a great way of getting people’s attention. Workspace’s business centres have typically seen a 10% increase in recycling after roadshows.

Workspace’s long-running customer engagement programme on recycling sees us work in partnership with customers, suppliers and employees to ensure we are continually improving our recycling rates. 

In 2021 our recycling rate across all of our properties hit a record 73%.

Actions

Workspace engaged with waste contractor Bywaters to identify opportunities to increase recycling. Firstly, Bywaters carried out a waste audit at multiple sites, looking at waste streams and quantities. Facilities teams provided input on issues and opportunities at a site level.

As a result, waste streams were simplified to:

  1. Dry mixed recycling
  2. General waste
  3. Food waste in 80% of cafés

Workspace's Support Services team developed:

  • Materials and tools to support facilities teams and occupiers, including signage and guides
  • Multi-lingual booklets for cleaning staff

Workspace and Bywaters engaged with facilities teams through meetings, emails and monthly updates, and provided them with:

  • Clear and consistent signage for use in offices, kitchens, cafés, common parts and back-of-house areas
  • Free flatpack cardboard recycling bins for dry mixed recycling for occupiers
  • Recyclopedia recycling guide to share with occupiers
  • Recycling Roadshow ‘Recipe Card’ (See below), with ‘ingredients’ and ‘method’ on how to run the event, including a simple step by step guide and support
  • Monthly waste data reports, providing portfolio-wide and site by site performance

In all centres, facilities teams:

  • Worked with Bywaters to improve back-of-house recycling areas
  • Removed any pre-existing signage and replaced it with the new signage
  • Provided occupiers with Recyclopedia guides and flatpack cardboard recycling bins
  • Asked occupiers to provide information to their cleaning partners to avoid recyclables going in general waste
  • Encouraged occupiers to reduce waste bins in their spaces to one central waste bin. Research shows that preventing employees from having individual waste bins reduces general waste

On an ongoing basis, facilities teams and Centre Managers continue to:

  • Carry out daily checks of waste areas and regularly review (at least quarterly) whether bins are being used to full capacity and whether the collection frequency is adequate.
  • Monitor waste data each month, sharing this with occupiers.
  • Engage with occupiers on recycling through newsletters, keeping them informed of performance and what they can do, as well as encouraging them to use data in their own sustainability communications.

12 centres held recycling roadshows in reception areas in 2018, giving occupiers the chance to:

  • Talk with centre teams and Bywaters about recycling
  • ‘Visit’ the Bywaters recycling centre through the use of virtual reality headsets
  • Play the waste sorting game, competing to see who could put waste into the correct bins most quickly
  • Use cycle power to blend their own smoothie

Looking forward

Initiatives to gain insights for future activities included:

  • Recycling surveys completed by 135 occupiers
  • Sustainability surveys completed by 15 cafés
  • 14 waste audits conducted

Benefits

  • Zero waste direct to landfill
  • 66% recycling, up from 61% the year before
  • 2,066 tonnes recycled
  • Contributing to Workspace’s Doing the Right Thing strategy and aim to reduce the environmental impacts of its properties and their related supply chains
  • Engaging with occupiers and supporting their sustainability goals

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