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Looking for practical ways to boost your business’ sustainability?

We’re betting you’ve already ticked off the low hanging fruit. Changed your energy tariff? Check. Reduced waste, with a big push on recycling? Check. Started to make sustainability a bigger part of the products you make or sell? Check and check.

So, as COP 26 draws to a close in Glasgow, here are six next steps on your sustainability journey.

  1. Switch to renewables

Of course you could switch to solar. Maybe a biomass generator would be ideal for your business. Perhaps a heat pump or wind turbine is the obvious energy answer. But all of that requires capital, and capital may be in short supply.

Fortunately, there’s lots of help out there – from government, local government, universities and charities – that could make the cost of installing renewable energy systems much less daunting.

Check here for starters.

  1. Tax relief that’s genuinely relieving

The problem with tax relief on renewable energy generation to date has been that what you gain from the tax relief you lose when your business rates shoot up because you’ve just increased the rateable value of your premises.

Happily, the latest Budget has some good news on that front, with the Chancellor announcing that business rate exemptions will be available for companies implementing onsite renewable energy generation and storage.

  1. Give the team an EV

You could give your employees a brand new electric vehicle but that, inevitably, brings enormous costs to the business and a mutiny from staff when they realise the Benefit in Kind has dented their take home pay.

Happily, Octopus EV’s salary sacrifice scheme removes the cost to the business, while also cutting your team’s tax and National Insurance costs. Then it throws in maintenance, insurance and free installation of a charge point for good measure.

And with Benefit in Kind rates reduced until at least 2025, there’s no big tax-based sting in the tail either.

  1. Choose a sustainable pension

Once, investing sustainably meant investing more riskily, with the expectation of poorer returns. That’s no longer the case. In fact, virtually every company pension provider will have sustainable investment as a core part of any portfolio – but you may want to check that unsustainable businesses don’t also form part of the investment mix.

If you do want to switch, sustainable options are available.

  1. Help your people make a difference

It can be hard to know just how much of a difference we can make to climate change. But a range of app-based tools like Deedster, Giki Zero and The Capture Club can make it easier to understand individual and collective carbon footprints and make it easier to reduce CO2 emissions from everyday life. Use them to help incentivise your team and drive action.

  1. Show your sustainability

Ok, so by now it’s possible to throw a stone in any direction and hit a sustainability accreditation provider, but that doesn’t mean some form of accreditation can’t be a powerful way to galvanise action within the business and demonstrate to customers and investors that you’re serious. Take a look at EcoVadis, Support the Goals and B Corp certification for ways to wear your sustainability on your sleeve and get your supply chain involved.

We can help you work more sustainably too!

From Cloud HR and electronic payslips to pensions auto enrolment, we’ll cut the paper, cost and resources required to manage your team. Call us now on +44 (0) 1276 805 844 or contact us.