Question: OK, I know about energy-efficient appliances and restaurant-specific measures that could help cut our energy costs. What else could I be doing?

Answer: There are lots of things small businesses of all kinds can do to help cut energy costs, and restaurants are no exception. We ran across this article explaining seven tips for small businesses that want to go a little greener. While they’re not all entirely applicable (chances are you’re not running servers—well, not computer servers, anyway) many are useful, including:

  • Reduce waste wherever possible. We’ve talked about reducing food waste on the site, but other kinds of waste add up too. Do you turn on lights that aren’t necessary? Are there ways you could reduce your air conditioning load? Do you order supplies that aren’t necessary and don’t get used up?
  • Make commuting eco-friendly. If your employees are driving to get to you, they’re using energy before they even step foot in the building. Figure out ways to encourage carpooling, public transit and biking—incentives work, as does subsidizing the cost of public transit. Provide a bike rack and, if possible, a place for employees to freshen up.
  • Kill vampires. Not the garlic-hating kind, but the appliances that are left on when they’re not needed and suck up power. Standby mode isn’t good enough—to really save, put your computer, printer, fax machine and copier on a power bar and turn them all off at the end of the day.
  • Consider in buying hybrid/eco-friendly vehicles. If you run a delivery service or a food truck, consider buying a hybrid vehicle or one that runs on alternative fuel like biodiesel. These are often eligible for government rebates, and will save you money on gas over the long term.

How do you save money when it comes to administrative tasks? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Image credit: adactio