3 Questions to Ask Before Your Next Decommission

As we navigate the ever-evolving landscape of work culture, one thing’s for sure: the days of being tied to a desk full-time are over. Remote work revolutionized how we collaborate, while hybrid models are reshaping our daily routines. The way we work is undergoing a seismic shift. And you know what? At Rheaply, we’re all about riding that wave of change – not just for the sake of productivity, but for the planet too.

As the way we work evolves, our need for office space does too. Office attendance has now stabilized at 30% below pre-pandemic levels while remote & hybrid models have become the norm. This is leading to higher commercial office vacancy rates in metropolitan areas, as well as overall office size reductions. An increased number of Rheaply’s customers are coming to us for help in finding their furniture new homes and ultimately ensuring these items avoid landfill through our decommissioning process. In some cases, this furniture can be reused in other offices, but more likely than not, it’s time for those standing desks to find a new home.

This could be a large undertaking, so here are a few things to consider before choosing to decommission your office space:

1. Does anyone I know need this?

Think about your network, vendors, & partners, would you be able to deliver or have someone pick up a set of tables or chairs? There are always people who can use those items. The more widely you communicate the availability of items, the more success you’re likely to have in finding their next life. In the past, our customers have sent emails, made phone calls, blasted listservs all which worked to varying levels of success.

Now, these customers leverage Rheaply’s network of 3000+ donation partners, remanufacturers, and other businesses who have a demand for these items across the entire country. to help our customers accelerate this process. On our Reuse Marketplace, organizations with demand join and source these items for themselves, helping to accelerate the decommissioning process for our customers. Get the word out before throwing something out!

2. Can I get rid of this responsibly?

We understand that under the current systems, maybe not everything can be salvaged or repurposed. That’s where responsible disposal comes into play. E-waste, in particular, poses a significant environmental hazard if improperly handled. Old computers, printers, and electronics shouldn’t end up in landfills where they leach toxic chemicals into the earth. Instead, seek out certified e-recyclers who can safely dismantle and recycle these items. For other materials like plastics, metals, and textiles – there are often specialized recycling programs available. By choosing responsible disposal methods, you’re not just minimizing your environmental footprint, you’re also setting a positive example for others in your industry and community.

3. How can I prevent this in the future?

Decommissioning an office isn’t just about clearing out physical space, it’s also an opportunity to reassess your organization’s overall sustainability strategy. By asking yourself this question, you’re opening the door to innovative solutions that go beyond the immediate decommissioning process.

Could you implement more sustainable practices in your day-to-day operations, such as transitioning to renewable energy sources or reducing paper usage? Are there opportunities to invest in eco-friendly alternatives for future office needs? Is there an opportunity to improve your procurement process to help you track your existing physical assets and avoid waste as a whole? By integrating sustainability into your long-term planning, you’re not just making a one-time change. Now is the time to commit to a greener, more resilient future for your organization and the planet.

So, before you pull the plug on that office space, please take a moment to reflect on these three critical questions. By prioritizing reuse, responsible disposal, and long-term sustainability, you’re not just decommissioning an office – you’re paving the way for a more environmentally conscious future.

Let Rheaply help

Our team has helped many clients to clear out offices, floors, and even whole buildings. We have partners on the ground that can mobilize quickly, while keeping your budget in mind. You’ll even receive a full impact report of the organizations who received your items.

Get in touch with us today to receive a quote on your next decommission.

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