Effective Ways to Improve Your Company’s E-waste Management and Recycling
Electronic waste is a growing problem. The pace at which we upgrade devices is growing faster every day. That means that we steadily feed our landfills with monitors, computers, mobile phones, and various other electronics. Some of those are hazardous to the environment and the humans in nearby areas. If you want to reduce your e-waste production and improve your recycling rates, here are four strategies to consider.
Donate what you don’t use anymore
This is the most immediate way to reduce the electronic waste you accumulated over time. Take a look at all the devices you don’t use anymore. Sort out those that are still in working order. A great time to do this is when you plan to upgrade your equipment with new models. Instead of chucking the outdated ones into a landfill, donate them to those in need. Search online for humanitarian projects or NGOs that accept donated items. Inquire with them whether working electronics are acceptable.
There are even some organizations and businesses that clean up, refurbish, and optimize devices before forwarding them to nonprofits or educational institutions. Just remember to wipe your data from the old devices before you give them over to anyone.
Double-check whether you deleted all of your financial records, copyrighted information, and any other proprietary material as well. If you’re not completely sure that you can remove all the trace remains yourself, hire an expert. They’ll help you scrub all your drives clean so that nobody can view any data crumbs even after file deletion.
Inquire about recycling programs
If your devices can’t be donated, send them to recycling. After removing the hazardous metal components, recycling is the best solution for the plastic that makes the bulk. Consider contacting the manufacturers of those electronics. They may have their own recycling programs.
Manufacturers who do their own recycling often provide incentives to their users. They may offer pickup services for your e-waste, provide you free mailing labels if you need to ship the wasted devices long-distance, or they might give you a discount on future purchases if you return outdated products.
Arrange for proper disposal of electronics
If donation and manufacturer-based recycling aren’t viable options, you need to properly dispose of your e-waste. You can partner with a disposal facility or handle it completely by yourself. If your business generates a lot of electronic waste on-site, a few mobile shredders might be a good investment.
You can handle any amount of waste as it comes up. That’s especially useful if the e-waste at your facility disrupts work and can’t sit around waiting for third-party disposal. If not, a certified company can arrange a pickup schedule. They’ll transport your unwanted devices to relevant facilities which accept that particular type of e-waste. This is the ideal solution for any electronics with hazardous components.
Migrate your business to the cloud
Upgrade your company’s IT setup with relevant cloud services. By transferring most of your data and processes to the cloud, you can dramatically reduce the total amount of electronic equipment that your business uses. Now, obviously, if you’re a modern company, you will already have some measure of cloud integration. but the goal here is to utilize it in a way that makes your operations more eco-friendly. Specifically, a powerful cloud storage solution will reduce the number of circuit boards and servers you would otherwise need.
In addition to environmental advantages, cloud-based operations will also make it easier for you to hire remote talent. Consider all the ways your business could develop if you introduce some international perspective, or at least offer more flexibility to your local workers. Another bonus perk is saving on maintenance costs. Cloud systems often don’t need a specialized IT team. They can be safely accessed from anywhere, so even if you do run into issues, they can be fixed at express rates instead of waiting for someone to come out to the office and inspect your devices.
Let’s sum up. The most immediate step you can take is to donate your unwanted devices. Wipe the data from functional old equipment and pass it along to organizations that need them. If they’re not suitable for donation, recycle them. Try joining a dedicated recycling program and getting some benefits from the manufacturers. As a last resort, shred the e-waste to prepare for proper disposal. Finally, move as much work as possible into the cloud, to reduce e-waste production in the first place.