Do you want to make your office greener but you don’t know where to start?
The Green Office Program was worked out by the experts of KÖVET in 1999. More than 120 organisations have been participating in KÖVET’s Green Office Program until now. They put into practice several actions to create an environmental and human friendly office and also raised awareness among employees.
The target of the program is to improve the organisation’s office in an environmental centralized way, with the method of eco-mapping.
Elements of the program:
- Green Office professional service (can be paid from the Innovation contribution – must be spent on research and development)
- Green Office Competition
- Green Office Exhibition
- Green Office Certification
Improving Green Office
Site visit and data collection
As the first step of the program the expert of KÖVET and the expert of the enterprise agrees on a schedule of the next steps. After this the Green Office coordinator of the enterprise visits the sites and offices with the expert of KÖVET, and with the help of the method of eco-mapping they identify the areas where improvement is needed. They also collect the necessary data in the entire office building area.
(Eco-mapping is a simple, visual method to identify the environmental problems within the organisation. Nothing else is needed but the ground plan of the office and observer eyes: to collect the problems and the good practices of employees in the next areas: energy, water, waste, soil and storage, noise and risks.)
Employees can be taken into the program by filling out the „environmental weather forecast” survey, a one page long questionnaire, which helps to find out which fields need improvement from the environmental point of view
Data Evaluation, building a Green Office workgroup
After mapping the offices, information will be summarized.
The problems that arise after the evaluation of the results, data and information are needed to develop solutions and development proposals adapted to structure and operation of the organizations. The Green Office workgroup is built from the company’s employees based on the functional units of the organization.
Elaboration of action plan
The Green Office action plan is an elaboration of the working method and the priority list of actions on the basis of the results gained during the first two steps, with responsible and deadlines. The priority order of the steps depends on the environmental, economic and feasibility aspects of each action. The target of this action plan can be an organic part of the organisation’s yearly program. If it is needed, the program can be presented to the CEO, in order to include his opinion in the final version of the action plan.
Implementation of the Action Plan
The implementation of the action plan takes place for four months under the leadership of the Green Office Coordinator, with the active involvement of the Green Office working group and involving all employees. The purpose of this is to become Green Office with the reorganization of the company’s office operations in an environmentally friendly and human-friendly way.
During the program the experts of KÖVET will be available (on the phone, e-mail) to solve the emerging problems.
Half year after the end of the program the experts of KÖVET together with the members of the workgroup walk round the office. During this monitoring process happens the evaluation of the action program and the results. Shaping possible new targets, another program.
Green Office Certification
Main criteria of Green Office Certification
- The applicant organization, depending on its size, has to dispose of one or more coordinator(s), who is/are responsible for the realization, maintenance and development of the environmental and human friendly operation of the organization.
- The organization has to compose its green operational policy and has to ensure that every employee knows it and works in accordance with it.
- The operation of the green office has to be revised every half year, new targets have to be set up (with responsible persons and deadlines) in order to ensure the constant development, and accomplishment of older targets have to be reviewed.
- Green Office Certification has to be renewed once in every two years, which requires a comprehensive audit. During this audit, just like on the first one, the organization’s resource management, its green procurement policy, its measures implemented for the health protection of employees, the emissions of the office and environmental consciousness of the employees are audited.
- Operating as green office, training of the employees towards green issues is indispensable.
- The qualified green office has to report to KÖVET on its yearly results and on new targets of the next year in a form of a short online
Phases of the Certification process:
On-line self-assessment test
Filling out the on-line self-assessment test is a precondition of the Certification. The aim of this test is to assure organizations to start Certification process only after having accomplished the minimum requirements.
Audit, during which the organization’s resource management, its green procurement policy, its measures implemented for the health protection of employees, the emissions of the office and environmental consciousness of the employees are audited by KÖVET’s experts.
Evaluation of the office based on the experts’ opinion
- type: a small excluding error was found during the Certification process. In case the organization corrects the error within one month, the revision of the audit can be claimed.
- type: a small excluding error concerning a field of operation was found during the Certification process. In case the organization corrects the error within half year, the revision of the audit can be claimed for extra charge.
- type: According to the opinion of the experts, the office can not get the Green Office Certification.
Issuing the certification, registration of the organization, right to use the Green Office logo
The offices which have obtained the Certification have the right to use the Green Office logo, obtained and will be registered among the Certified Green Office sin Hungary.
The qualified office has to do an inner revision of the program in every year (eco-mapping), which can be supervised by KÖVET.
The qualified green office has to report to KÖVET on its yearly results and new targets of the next year. As a result of this report KÖVET renews the Certification for the 2. year.
Two years after having obtained the Certification, the organization has to make its office reaudited by KÖVET to be able to keep the Green Office Certification. This new audit requires a new contract.