Sustainability Report 2015
Officeworks is Australia’s leading retailer and supplier of office products and solutions for home, business and education.
Officeworks is an established every-channel retailer operating through an Australian-wide network of stores, online platforms, customer service centres and a business sales force. Officeworks’ team of more than 6,000 team members is focused on delivering a one-stop shop for households, students, teachers and education institutions, and small-to-medium businesses. Revenue for the most recent financial year came to more than $1.7 billion.
Officeworks’ Positive Difference Plan encompasses three pillars – environment, responsible sourcing and people:
- Environmental impact of products
- Environmental impact of operations
- Products from sustainable materials
- Ethical sourcing
- Learning and development
Environmental impact of products
Officeworks continues to look at its product range on a holistic basis in order to reduce any impact on the environment. The business has worked with Planet Ark to develop a new packaging recycling label to make it easier for customers to recycle packaging and avoid contaminating kerbside recycling bins.
Officeworks continues to reduce the environmental impact of its products through various product stewardship programs. The ‘Bring IT Back’ program continues to grow in popularity, with a 30 percent increase in computers and computer accessories collected over the last year. In total, 371,871 kilograms of computer equipment for recycling was collected over the past year through the Officeworks store network.
30 per cent increase in recycled computer equipment
‘MobileMuster’ collections, which recycle mobile phones, increased by 40 percent to 4,538 kilograms, the equivalent of 57,000 handsets and batteries.
Since 2005, Officeworks has been involved in the Cartridges 4 Planet Ark program. In the past 12 months, Officeworks became the first company in Australia to collect more than five million printer cartridges for recycling. Last year, 889,045 printer cartridges were collected through Officeworks' store network. In addition, Officeworks ran a program in conjunction with Planet Ark to promote printer cartridge recycling in schools.
Environmental impact of operations
Officeworks has continued to improve energy efficiency through the rollout of LED lighting in stores. Over the past year, LED lighting has been installed in nine additional stores, bringing the total number of stores with LED lighting to 24. This, and other energy efficiency projects, has seen energy consumption remain at similar levels to the prior year despite the addition of seven new stores.
Officeworks recycles 63 per cent of its operational waste. This includes cardboard, paper, plastics, bottles and cans. Late in the financial year, Officeworks completed an initiative to remove single-use pallets from the supply chain of some of the highest selling products. These pallets were previously discarded in store waste bins because they were not recyclable.
Products from sustainable materials
The focus on sourcing paper-based products from sustainable forests continued throughout the year at Officeworks. All companies supplying paper-based products are required to complete a Forest Survey to ensure the products sold by Officeworks are sourced from legal and well-managed forests. Officeworks recognises and prioritises 100 per cent recycled content or Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification as best practice. At the end of June 2015, we increased the sourcing of recycled and FSC-certified products to 37 per cent by product sales.
37 per cent recycled or FSC-certified products
Officeworks sources the majority of its products from local suppliers, with just over 10 per cent of total purchases coming from direct imports.
During the year Officeworks has continued to enhance its ethical sourcing program. Initiatives include:
- Providing ethical sourcing training to 80 team members including buyers, buying assistants and merchandise planners.
- Expanding Officeworks’ ethical program to include local suppliers which will provide better transparency of our supply chain.
- Adding 251 new supplier factories to the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex) which is an online database that enables suppliers to share self-assessment and ethical information.
Learning and development
Officeworks continues to invest in team member development, with training increasing by 10,000 hours to 75,000 hours across the business. A key part of the Officeworks training program continues to be the Future Leaders Program and Officeworks Leadership program in which 70 team members took part.
75,000 hours of training
Working safely continues to be a key part of the Officeworks culture. The total recordable injury frequency rate has improved over the past 12 months, falling from 21.9 to 19.3.
To reduce the significant risks associated with operating forklifts in store receiving areas, internal training for forklift operators was introduced. All new forklift operators are now required to complete this training and be assessed for competency in order to operate the store forklift. The internal training consists of an online course, provision of a handbook, store forklift and receiving area orientation, and competency assessment.
Officeworks has also begun to roll out Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) and training to all team members in stores and support offices. Once the national roll out is complete, all stores will be listed on the St John Ambulance Public Access Defibrillation website thus making Officeworks the largest national retailer to voluntarily offer public access defibrillation.
Officeworks' 6,708 team members are evenly divided between male and females. Women make up 38 per cent of managerial roles and 73 team members identify as Indigenous.
As part of the Officeworks Indigenous Program, team members and customers took part in National Reconciliation Week (NRW) events at many Officeworks sites across the country. In-store activities included the inclusion of Welcome to Country or Acknowledgment of Country ceremonies, children’s programs such as Ollie Kids’ Club NRW-themed colouring-in activities and a range of other cultural events.
The Officeworks National Support Office celebrated NRW with internal events, including presentations about the Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience and Jawun Indigenous Corporate Partnerships.
Through a number of local community involvement initiatives, Officeworks contributed more than $1.4 million to local communities. Officeworks' sausage sizzle fundraising service raised more than $500,000 and stores contributed more than $170,000 through local community contributions (cash and in-kind donations).
Through the national partnerships with The Smith Family and the Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation (ALNF), Officeworks contributed more than $300,000 in direct and in-kind stock donations. During the annual 'Back-to-School Appeal' more than $93,000 was raised through direct cash donations to The Smith Family, while the partnership with ALNF saw the 'Wall of Hands' campaign come to life in stores with more than $77,000 raised.
Officeworks’ ongoing support of The Smith Family is growing through numerous channels, such as permanent online donations and a donation of 114 computers to the Tech Pack digital literacy program. Officeworks is also proud to support The Smith Family’s Indigenous programs, including 'Girls at the Centre' and the 'Let’s Read' Indigenous reading program.
Collectively, Officeworks has contributed more than 2,000 hours through team member volunteering opportunities. This includes more than 550 hours contributed to The Smith Family on a nation-wide basis by team member volunteers and 400 hours through the annual 'Clean Up Australia Day' activity.
In 2015-16 Officeworks will focus on its three pillars – Environment, Responsible Sourcing and People:
- Invest in more LED lighting and energy monitoring systems
- Increase the volume of waste recycled
- Expand our product stewardship programs
- Continue to increase transparency of our supply chains
- Increase sourcing of FSC and Recycled paper
- Continue to rollout topical safety and wellbeing campaigns to ensure safety remains at the forefront of every team members’ mind
- Introduce new training systems and tools to enhance our core programs and facilitate easier access by team members
- Introduce pre- and post-training ‘bookends’ to help team members and managers realise the benefits of this investment
GRI Reference: G4-DMA (Product and Services), G4-12, G4-EN27, G4-EN33, G4-DMA (Supplier Environmental Assessments), G4-DMA (Product and Service Labelling), G4-PR3
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