UK businesses could benefit from millions of pounds in new savings and dramatically reduce their carbon footprint thanks to a new green calculator from O2.
The new Green Savings Calculator uses details provided by individual businesses, including travel and office space arrangements, to help identify ways to save money and reduce carbon emissions from flexible working.
In trials, the calculator found an average potential annual saving of £2.6m for a company of 1,000 employees*. Overall, O2 calculated that it could provide a £53bn** annual saving for companies in the UK, at a time when employers are working hard to support UK workers through the COVID-19 pandemic.
While the pandemic initially drove UK businesses to support temporary home working, it is likely that flexible work is here to stay. O2 is already one of the biggest providers of flexible working technology and connectivity in the country, and the Green Savings Calculator, built by The Lab, powered by O2 and based on calculations by the Carbon Trust, is designed to help businesses plan for the longer term.
The new tool can be used to build the business case to invest in the digital tools, capability, and confidence to build back the UK economy in a sustainable and resilient way. The calculator looks at different savings sources across the business, including business travel reduction and longer-term initiatives like fleet and office rationalisation.
Companies including Hitachi Capital UK PLC are already signed up to the ongoing beta trial of the calculator, which could support thousands of businesses across the UK in becoming more flexible.
O2 CEO, Mark Evans announced the calculator at the Carbon Trust's Corporate Sustainability Summit in London, bringing to life the real benefit of sustainable approaches to business of all sizes following O2's own aim to become the UK's first net zero in its own operations telecoms company by 2025 earlier this year, and helping the UK to reach the same goal.
O2 research shows that if UK workers who can work flexibly choose to work from home twice a week, the UK would see an annual 14.3 megatonne CO2e decrease in greenhouse gas emissions from travel - more than the total annual emissions for Northern Ireleand.***
Mark Evans, CEO, O2 said:
"The pandemic has undoubtedly been tough for Britain, but it is also a catalyst for change. The surge in flexible working is already delivering clear benefits for people, businesses, and the environment, that we should look to carry into the future.
"Mobile and digital connectivity, smartly designed and deployed, can help businesses and industries to improve their productivity and efficiency, while reducing carbon emissions. All businesses need to start thinking green with every decision they make."
Tom Delay, Chief Executive, the Carbon Trust said:
*"We are dedicated to helping businesses move towards a more sustainable future by creating tools to inform strategic decisions. Re-imagining working patterns in the coming months and years provides an opportunity to shift towards more sustainable business models. The Carbon Trust has worked with O2 for over 10 years on its carbon reduction strategy and we look forward to continuing our work together to help deliver a net zero future."