Recently, there has been a push for “going green.” What does that mean for businesses? “Going green” with logistics means choosing avenues and resources that result in an eco-friendly product for your consumer, while still providing you with a decent profit margin. Five trends are currently in play that affect sustainability in the logistics industry.
1) Green Is Green
When evaluating the cost/benefits for “going green” many companies are finding a cost benefit to “doing the right thing.” When you tailor your current logistics knowledge to “green” processes, it can inspire your workforce and management. When you take time to educate your employees on the effects their everyday actions have on the environment and on profits/job security, you will find it easier to get them to work with, not against, your supply chain challenges in order to “go green.” Working with a sustainability management professional or industry colleagues that have already made their processes “greener” could also yield some valuable tips or case studies.
2) Green Packaging Is Good Business
One area that will negate profits – and harm the environment – is over-consumption of materials. In many companies, packaging is a real challenge in this area. Many retailers are choosing “green” alternatives to packaging for shipping and on retail shelves. This does not just save money. It can also build customer loyalty.
3) There is Energy In Saving Energy
Studies have proven that employees working for “green” companies have a much higher degree of productivity than those that do not. This is true for the logistics industry especially. Take some time to audit energy usage and set clear goals on building a healthier and more sustainable workplace for your employees. Contact the Environmental Protection Agency for some ideas for energy audits. Start by making small changes. Even small changes can have a huge impact. When employees feel that they are part of a strong company, they feel an increase in loyalty and satisfaction with their jobs.
4) Technology Is Making Everything More Green
Technology in logistics is allowing more efficiency – in time-to-market, transportation, “just in time” delivery and many other areas. As technology makes the logistics world more and more efficient, it takes less resources to accomplish the same tasks.
5) The Future Is Green
Today, there are many examples of “green” business strategies that have prospered. From electric cars to “bring your own bag” at the grocery stores, consumers are demanding attention be paid to the importance of sustainability. Not long ago, a business choosing to have a conscience about the environment was respected but hardly rewarded. Today, such an attitude is expected by customers and shareholders, simply because it is good business.
Today’s market brings many challenges for “green” logistics, but it also offers an increase in profit and an advantage over the competition. As more consumers choose to go with companies that practice sustainability, the number of environmentally responsible companies will grow and managers who are familiar with the “greening” process will be in high demand.