Waste Management isn’t usually a topic that springs to someone’s mind when they are thinking about winning bids, proposals and tenders.
Despite this, it is a critical area and an easy one in which firms can collect additional marks during the evaluation process.
Consider a construction company. This could be a micro plumbing business or a national building contractor. Now consider the buying organisation. They will probably have sustainability objectives, recycling targets and in-house initiatives about eco issues.
If the construction company can demonstrate that they align with, and will help support, the buyer’s aspirations they will be seen in a favourable light.
So how can they do this?
The construction company could think about sustainability and waste management throughout the lifetime of the project, not just when it is on site.
- Mobilisation and Pre-construction – Can waste be designed out? Can they specify recycled materials?
- Construction / Site Arrangements – Can collaborative arrangements be set up with other companies on site at the same time? Can waste management plans be target driven and incentivised?
- Supply Chain – Can approved suppliers be selected based on environmental credentials as well as technical, ethical and health & safety issues? Can subcontractors be given back-to-back agreements which mean they must adhere to the waste processes of the main contractor?
- Office – can a sustainability champion be appointed? Can office processes become more waste-friendly?
The company could also broaden out its existing procedures to ensure waste management and sustainability is clearly shown to be critical:
- Risk Assessments – could these include environmental risks and recycling risks?
- Industry Best Practice – could CPD (continuing professional development) and staff training include sustainability for all staff?
- Innovation – could new methods of working include rejecting excess packaging or reporting on sustainability successes?
- Case Studies and CVs – could these highlight excellence in waste management or sustainability, as well as other areas of technical interest?
No Cost Assistance and Downloads
One organisation in Scotland is committed to helping organisations reduce costs by saving energy and water, reducing raw materials use and managing waste efficiently. Zero Waste Scotland runs the Resource Efficient Scotland programme, with funding coming from the Scottish Government and the European Regional Development Fund. This means the advice is free to the recipient.
Resource Efficient Scotland have identified construction as a key sector and specialist support is available. In addition to a consultancy service, they offer some superb resources which can be accessed immediately:
- Measuring, monitoring and reducing waste – Use the Site Waste Management Plan to evaluate your waste and identify opportunities to reduce it
- Re-using materials – The Construction Materials Exchange is a free service that enables you to exchange materials you don’t need for ones you do
- Procurement of materials – Prevention is always better than cure, so use this resource to source sustainable materials in the most energy-efficient way
- Designing out waste – Build in energy-efficiency, replaceable components and flexible layouts to all your plans
These are free-to-use templates and interactive websites which help construction companies minimise waste and improve sustainability.
As well as helping win tenders, implementation of improvements usually leads to cost savings and is ethically responsible.