The threat of climate change is real, which means hospitality businesses urgently need to rethink their approach. If the possibility of saving the planet and reducing your energy costs isn’t enough incentive, improving your customer proposition and competing with competitor’s green branding might be.
At first changing your practices may seem daunting, but there’s a few measures that can be put in place to ensure your business is on track.
1. Access your current situation
The first step to making changes is to access how sustainable your business is so you can make informed decisions and engage staff. Consider factors such as resource efficiency (electricity, gas and water) and the amount of food waste your business produces on a daily basis. Acknowledging these factors is a great starting point for figuring out what to prioritise.
2. Encourage your customers to go green
One way to encourage your customers to adopt sustainable practices is to lead by example. Ensure recycling is easy for your customers by making sure recycling bins are available and clearly labelled. Often recycling bins in bathrooms are forgotten about so make sure you’re covering those areas!
In hotels let visitors know that by hanging towels up in the bathroom the cleaner will assume they don’t need washing. Simple signs up in bedrooms can also give your customers a gentle reminder to turn lights off before they leave their room.
3. Install Energy Saving Technologies
Energy wastage is just as important as reducing your food waste, but many businesses often forget to make it a priority. It has been estimated that 75% of hotel’s environmental impacts can be a result of their excessive energy consumption.
For hospitality businesses wanting to reduce their costs and also save the environment, installing an energy management system that monitors energy usage to help you reduce your consumption may be essential. Controlling your lighting, heating and cooling systems will also have a positive impact on your bottom line.
4. Support Sustainable Business
Especially for businesses serving food, being more mindful as to where you purchase your ingredients can reduce your impact on the environment and help local business to thrive. On top of this, more visibility about where your ingredients were sourced is a great attraction for potential customers.
Purchasing from local farmers and grocery stores also means you can cut down on packaging that usually comes with fresh food. Unlike supermarkets, local grocery stores tend not to use as much plastic on raw ingredients and they also give you the option to re-use your own containers.
To encourage sustainability and show your customer you’re making the effort, make sure you’re promoting the environmentally businesses you’re working with. This can be done in inventive ways such as stating the food miles travelled or even explaining on the menu that the ingredients were sourced locally.
User Case: Independent Butchers
At AEMS our team have been working closely with small and independent hospitality businesses across the UK to change the way they use and view their energy.
Using our energy management, Quality and Excellence Butchers were able to identify processes within their businesses that needed changing. The data gathered helped the butcher to recognise his staff needed some training to ensure all unnecessary out of hours energy usage was stopped.The tool also gave peace of mind to the store owner when he wasn’t on site, and provided new industry bench-marking statics highlighting how the store was already performing much better than others in the industry.