We are committed to reducing the impact that we have on the environment by looking at every aspect of our business to improve the use of resources.
As a professional services group, the key sustainability issues facing our business are about how we can reduce our carbon emissions by making different choices in relation to our offices, travel, use of paper and by working with suppliers across our supply chain who are investing in sustainability.
Working sustainably with our clients
Where possible, we share documents electronically with our clients to avoid excessive paper usage. Similarly, where appropriate, we will suggest online meetings and telephone calls rather than face-to-face meetings in order to reduce our collective carbon footprint. Every decision that we make in relation to sustainability is balanced with our number one priority of delivering an excellent service to our clients. Our commitment is that if we can achieve that in an environmentally friendly way, we will.
Reducing business travel
Where appropriate, we continue to use Microsoft Teams instead of encouraging travel between offices and this has seen us continue to deliver certain activities virtually post-pandemic including our Leadership Lunches, Gateley Leadership Overviews and new starter inductions. Our Gateley Agile approach encourages meetings to be held virtually where not all attendees can attend in person.
Reducing our paper usage
In 2020 we introduced a Paperlite project across our business, facilitated by the need to work remotely during the COVID pandemic. Across many teams, we were able to reduce the amount of printing that we were doing by introducing alternative ways of collaborating and working. For example, we have set up desks with two monitors to enable documents to be compared on screen; historically, document mark-ups were mostly undertaken in hard copy.
We have also invested in DocuSign technology to enable documents to be signed electronically from any device, in a secure and encrypted way. Many corporate deal transactions which, historically, would require multiple copies of deal documentation to be printed for signature on completion, can now be signed electronically through DocuSign.
As a result of our reduction in printing, we were able to remove most of our desk printers, which were donated to local charities through our relationship with social enterprise, Make Good Grow, and have completed a procurement exercise to appoint a print partner who will deliver sustainable and efficient multi-functional devices to each of our offices.
Making sustainable choices across our supply chain
By way of example, we have worked with B-certified supplier Project Merchandise to procure sustainable promotional items. Project Merchandise has identified sustainable merchandise, for example using recycled materials or identifying products that switch out synthetics for natural materials, avoid harmful chemicals, or cut excess packaging. For every £500 Gateley spends with Project Merchandise, they plant 25 trees and offset 0.5 tonnes of CO2.