Choosing the right waste management service for your business shouldn't be a strenuous affair or something that can affect your company that much, but, you would be surprised how these seemingly small choices can sometimes reek havoc on your finance and stress levels (if not chosen wisely).
It may not be the number one priority on your ever growing list of things to do. What with: Payroll, Customers, Clients & Employees to take care of & that is before you include the hours of admin, but it is a choice that should be carefully considered and carefully selected.
Proper waste management is of high importance in your business for several reasons. It not only contributes to environmental sustainability but also has a direct impact on your company's reputation, compliance with regulations and cost-effectiveness of your own operations.
Now that we have your undivided attention! Let us delve in to the most important points for proper waste management.
As a business owner, you have a responsibility to minimise your carbon footprint. Working with a proper waste management company, that disposes of your rubbish in the correct manner can help you reduce your pollution, excess wastage and it demonstrates to your customers, investors and community that you are committed to preserving your local environment.
Across the UK and around the world, you will find that there are plenty of strict regulations regarding how companies dispose, recycle and manage waste. Some waste materials such as Hazardous waste requires strict practices to dispose of properly. If businesses do not comply with these you could face fines & legal penalties from your local authorities and serious damage could be done to your reputation and consumer trust. Proper waste collection and disposal ensures that you as a business remain compliant and follow your local laws.
All of us as a population are becoming more and more aware of environmental issues and our impact on them. Businesses that implement effective waste management practices can enhance their reputation and image. Just as negative stories about improper waste disposal that leads to major fines can create a brand image nightmare!
Selecting an efficient waste solution for your business can be very cost-effective in the long run. By making sure that you have the right service, collection frequency, amount of waste collected & correct size bins, you are avoiding overpaying for services that you don't need all whilst gaining the collection services that your business really wants.
It isn't just about protecting your environment and your community. Your employees also need to be trained on proper waste management practices if handling hazardous waste or any waste that could be harmful. When your employees are fully trained and aware of your procedures, this reduces the risk of exposure to harmful substances and ensures that your waste is handled, stored and disposed of safely.
Businesses that make themselves open to adopting new ides and sustainable waste practices, including proper waste management can gain an unexpected but deserved advantage on their competitors. Environmentally conscious customers and investors are always attracted to businesses that strive to reduce their footprint and impact.
Proper waste management isn't just waste and recycling.
It is about your impact on the environment, your reputation with local communities and investors, your business costs, your employees welfare. It is much more then just bin bags and 1100L bins!
In our opinion there are 4 different waste provider types that a business can choose from. These are: Local, National, Government & Broker.
Local: These are small, local waste providers (like us) that are usually deep in the heart of their community (also like us).
National: Bigger, more well established names, who cover a whole or multiple countries. Think Biffa or Veolia.
Government: What is says on the tin. Government providers such as your local city council, who will charge you for removal of waste.
Broker: These are basically the middlemen. They don't directly collect waste streams or have any waste facilities, they book removals for their customers with a 3rd party waste company.
Now you know what provider types are out there, let's have a little peek at their pros & cons.
Each specific provider will have positive and negative aspects to them that you maybe looking for in your next waste services.
- Personalised Service: Local providers often offer personalised and attentive service, catering to the unique needs of businesses in the area.
- Community support: Working with a local, family-run provider can foster a sense of community and support other local businesses.
- Flexibility: They are usually more flexible in terms of collection schedules and accommodating special requests.
- Proud Service: Local providers care more about every customer as they are more in tune with their community, these means the level of service is greater and more focused on what the customer needs.
- Limited Resources: Smaller providers may have limited resources and capabilities compared to larger companies.
- Limited Service Offering: They may not be able to offer a total waste management service, if for example you need Front End Loaders or Rollonoff skips or hazardous waste collection.
- Limited Geographic Reach: They usually have less coverage in multiple areas, which can be a limitation for a business with multiple locations.
- Large Resources: National chains have the resources and infrastructure to handle waste efficiently on a very large scale.
- Comprehensive Services: National providers often offer a wide range of waste management services, including recycling and hazardous waste disposal.
- Less Personalised: Large providers may offer less personalised service, as they deal with a higher volume of customers.
- Higher Costs: National chains usually have higher fees compared to local providers.
- No Community Connection: They may not have the same local community involvement as smaller, local providers.
- Bad Service: With more customers & profits, they give less value to every customer so don't spend that much focus on customer service.
- Regulatory Compliance: Government waste providers ensure compliance with local waste disposal regulations.
- Stability: They offer long-term stability and reliability in waste collection and disposal.
- Pricing: Prices are often regulated or consistent across the region.
- Limited Flexibility: Government providers may have limited to no flexibility in terms of services and schedules.
- Slow service: Government/local councils can take an age to collect junk and other items. With so many different managers/bosses/cuts to workers etc it can lead to delays in service or decision making.
- Difficult to Contact:
- Limited Innovation: Council services are not as responsive to changing waste management needs compared to private providers, as they don't directly rely on customers to stay afloat.
- More Options: Brokers connect businesses with various waste management providers, offering a range of choices.
- Cost Savings: They may negotiate better pricing on behalf of businesses, potentially leading to cost savings.
- Saves Time: Brokers handle the logistics of finding and coordinating with waste providers, saving your business time.
- Additional Cost: Brokers charge fees for their services, which will add to the overall expense.
- Potential Conflicts of Interest: Brokers may prioritise certain providers based on their own financial interests.
- Communication Challenges: There can be communication gaps between the business, broker, and waste management provider. This can lead to bad service & resolution if problems do crop up.
As we have mentioned above, all these providers have different aspects that you may think will be more beneficial to you and your business compared to another.
You may want more time without worrying about organising it and aren't bothered about the extra cost associated with this.
You may want a local provider who prides themselves in service and quality above all else.
The choice is yours.
You have heard the advantages and disadvantages to each provider, however, there are some critical factors that you should look to confirm to ensure that you are selecting the correct company. These are:
Verify that the company complies with local regulations and laws. Check for a Waste Carriers Licence or in some cases a Waste Transfer Note so that you have proof that a legitimate company has collected and disposed of your waste properly.
View verified reviews on various websites such as Trustpilot or Reviews.io. Real reviews from real customers will paint a picture of the service that they provide to their customers.
Compare market prices to find the best deal/rate for yourself. Don't just look for the cheapest deal or a FB cowboy tipper as this will only come back to bite you in the long run. The last thing your business needs is your confidential data scattered everywhere on the side of a road for everyone to see, all because Paul from Facebook said he can collect it for £3 and a disposable vape!
Check out how the providers dispose of waste. Do they dispose at a Landfill, transport it to Waste to Energy facility or they might have a full scale Recycling Centre. Always remember to keep your business reputation and waste needs in mind.
Business and business needs differ with every industry.
It is up-to you to find the best one that suits what you want. Here are some points to follow:
What type of waste? Will you be disposing of Plastic, Glass, Cardboard, Food, Household, Hazardous, Confidential? Note down all the types of waste that your industry produces.
Amount of waste & how frequent? How much waste are you going to be producing? How frequent would this need collecting to be cost effective for your business whilst being the most efficient collection times.
What storage and where? Where will you store your waste and what in? Would a skip be more efficient then having 4 1100L Bins for instance. Make sure to figure this out and discuss this with your potential waste providers.
What services? Does your business need confidential papers collecting? hazardous waste? Or, maybe you just need a simple bin collection. Search for companies that provide all the services that you require.
What is your budget? Set out a budget that you are able to set aside for waste management. Again, this can help influence you to finding the correct company.
Employee Training? Will your employees need safety training if disposing of hazardous goods?
If you are in any doubt at what your business may comprehensively need, have a look at similar industries to yourself, or, speak with potential providers to see what they quote and suggest.
We are all responsible for our environment and ensuring that we try to create a sustainable work environment where possible.
Always look to engage and work alongside businesses in the waste industry that are working hard on discovering different ways of transforming waste.
Reviews, Reviews, Reviews!
Verified reviews always point you in the right direction. You can discover the ins, outs and dirty laundry of any business by checking out their online reviews.
Are customers waiting 4 hours to speak to a robot to then go and pass them onto another robot?
Are customers rubbish being collected on time, every-time?
If mistakes happen, which they do, are the company quick to respond to the query and resolve the issue?
Get online, get your inner sherlock out & dig into those deepest, darkest company secrets!
If you still don't trust the online reviews, why not try a test run? Send an email, or online message to the company to assess how long it takes them to respond. This can always be a good general gage of how serious they take their service.
Fighting it out to get the best contract terms and transparency is essential for your business. Ask questions that need answering.
How long is the contract length? Make sure that you are aware of the contract length before you sign up, as if you aren't happy with the service, the last thing you want to do is be held within a contract for 2-3 years!
Does the contract auto-renew with a small window to cancel? If the waste provider has a 14 day auto renewal policy, but you have to cancel within 30 days of the auto renewal date, then this can leave you with a couple of weeks to cancel before it auto renews!
Are there any hidden fees? You don't want to be stung by hidden fees, and some providers will make up anything to get the charge in. 'Oh sorry we couldn't collect your waste, it was just that your bin was actually 2cms off centre which threw our drivers chi off but they are now at home making a full recovery, see you next month'.
More quick tips to ensure full transparency from your provider:
You own a national restaurant chain that has been using a GOVERNMENT waste management provider for years. However, you want to enhance your sustainability efforts and reduce waste-related costs, so switched to a LOCAL waste provider.
Why You Switched:
Your manufacturing company has been working with a large NATIONAL waste management provider for years. However, changes in their production processes led to a need for more LOCAL specialised waste management services.
Why You Switched:
These case studies demonstrate how businesses can benefit from switching waste management providers when their needs change, such as when sustainability goals evolve or when specialized expertise is required for handling specific waste streams. You don't ever have to feel like you can't switch because you are committed to the service and company.
Making the right switch can lead to improved sustainability, cost savings, regulatory compliance, and peace of mind. You know business is a dog eat dog world, and at the end of the day your business needs has to always come first.
By following the instructions above. you're now equipped to pick the waste provider that's as reliable as your morning coffee! Remember, waste management might not be glamorous, but it's essential for your business.
So, whenever you are selecting your provider: Ask questions, Don't take No for an answer, Ask for proof of confirmations in writing, Enquire about contract terms, Search around. By making a well-informed decision, you're not just managing waste—you're investing in a cleaner, greener, and more sustainable future for your business and our planet.
So, go out there, make the right choice, and let the great war of waste commence!