Printing system saves 171 trees per year
Law firms, like many other professional services businesses, are often document heavy, paper-hungry organisations. Reducing paper consumption can reduce the number of trees used in making paper and also, as paper production is resource intensive, it can cut energy use, limit pollution and reduce the environmental and social impacts of deforestation.
According to research by ORS Group, the average office worker uses approximately 10,000 sheets of paper per year, of which approximately 68% are wasted.
Last year, as part of Walker Morris' commitment to reducing waste, the firm implemented a new printer system to try to reduce the amount of paper it consumed through responsible and efficient use of paper. It invested in a centralised, serverless printing solution which replaced all of the organisation's current printers with fewer 'follow-me' printers. The new printers require double-sided printing and allow users to delete and manage print jobs from the printer. As a result, less paper is used through printing duplex, and unnecessary duplicates or incorrect printing is reduced as users can manually delete jobs from the printer or automatically deleted if they are left in the print queue for too long. The Scan-to-Me functionality allows users to scan directly to their email account and replace many of their paper-based filing systems with electronic records.
In the 12 months following implementation, Walker Morris reduced its consumption of paper by 15%, which is equivalent to 577 boxes or 1,427,500 sheets of paper! Not only does this represent a saving for the organisation but also an estimated 171 trees per annum*.
Louise Power, Partner and Head of Corporate Responsibility at Walker Morris commented: "As a major employer in Yorkshire we recognise the importance of creating a positive social impact by supporting the community and people where we work and live and actively caring for the environment in which we operate. As such we are committed to continuously improving our environmental performance and to integrate recognised environmental management best practice into our business operations.
"We've been delighted to be able to reduce our paper consumption through our investment in a new printer solution. It is one of a number of IT investments we are making to become more efficient as a firm and to reduce the amount of resources we consume. Ultimately we all should value paper more highly as a precious resource and not use it as a disposable commodity."
*Based on Conservatree estimates that 1 tree is used to produce 8,333.3 sheets of copy paper.