As global changes impact how companies do their work, Steelcase creates sustainable office furnishings. Workplaces must become more flexible, doing more in less space, minimizing the office’s ecological footprint at the same time that physical spaces may also be shrinking. Steelcase is responding with strategies that reflect these changes, finding competitive advantages with a sustainable approach.
Design for the Environment
Tammy Ayers of Steelcase will be sharing Steelcase’s perspective on the responding panel for the morning keynote session: Industrial Revolution: The Business Case for Zero Waste. Tammy is responsible for integrating the materials chemistry environmental platform in keeping with the company’s global sustainability goals. Her emphasis is on understanding the materials used in product development and production.
The company’s 2014 Sustainability Report says:
“We approach design with a closed loop mentality, from examining the chemical profiles of the materials and components we use to offering comprehensive end of use solutions. We’re measuring impacts at every phase — from design, manufacture, delivery, use and reuse, recycling and end of use — to ensure we’re always improving the performance of our products. This ensures we are meeting our objectives as well as helping customers meet their goals with confidence.’
Steelcase is also expanding its Steelcase Supplier Code of Conduct beyond North America, to include European and Asia Pacific suppliers, reflecting the company’s precautionary approach to materials. Recently the company helped BASF, the world’s leading chemical company, redesign its regional headquarters in Hong Kong. The new space, with an open-office environment featuring desktop sharing, supports a new way of working that encourages collaboration and enhances productivity.
“Today, workplaces are held to higher standards. They must simultaneously maximize space, foster collaboration, provide privacy, reinforce brand and culture, and contribute to talent retention. And it all needs to occur in optimized real estate footprints.”
Early Cradle to Cradle Adopter
Steelcase launched the Think® chair in 2004 – the first product certified under the Cradle to Cradle Certified™ Products Program. In keeping with Steelcase’s commitment to ongoing innovation the chair has been completely redesigned with new materials, technologies and performance capabilities since it’s launch.
Aligning Budgets, Timelines, Values
By providing environmentally and socially responsible alternatives to landfills including resale, charitable donation and material recovery, Steelcase customers can make way for the new, while keeping waste out of landfills. Last year those programs diverted 50 million pounds of unused furniture from the landfill in the U.S. alone. The sustainability report explains how they work with clients, giving them the vital business information that helps them plan for office upgrades and make good environmental choices.
“The Steelcase ‘Phase 2’ program helps North American customers assess their furnishing assets and designs decommissioning plans — including charitable reuse. Last year, Phase 2 introduced a new budget planning tool that evaluates the value of current assets and aligns decommissioning strategies with sustainability goals to create the optimal solution for each customer. In addition, a new upgrade pilot encourages customers to trade in their existing used chairs for credit toward our Gesture® chair.”
Steelcase continues its business success by understanding cradle to cradle
and zero waste economy principles. Their experience offers valuable lessons.
Don’t lose this opportunity to take gather the unique perspectives of all our speakers
and panelists including: Cradle to Cradle pioneer William McDonough,
IKEA Canada president Stefan Sjöstrand, Elisabeth Comere of Tetra Pak, and Wayne Davis of Harvest Power.