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Environmental Sustainability Initiatives

We Care About Doing Our Part

At Online Metals, we know that materials are at the core of long-term sustainability for our planet!

 

We also believe that environmental sustainability in business should support an organization in both reducing their total carbon footprint, and in optimizing their end-to-end operations to achieve greater cost savings and profitability.

 

Sustainability starts and ends with people, from our employees thinking critically about every process with our employee sustainability initiatives, working with partners that align themselves through more eco-friendly business practices including receiving and handling of operational waste, all the way through to order fulfillment and our dedication to you, our customers.



We Align with Partners That Act Sustainably

We partner with local suppliers that understand the importance of waste reduction and work with us on continuously improving how we receive materials into our docks through to customer fulfillment.


  • We Avoid Wasteful Overpackaging: Our local suppliers ship us material in bare bundles with protective corner boards to avoid unnecessary unpackaging, repackaging, and paperwork processing and allow us to provide more sustainable packaging for shipping to our customers.
  • We Repurpose Essential Packaging: Shipments that arrive outside the local shipping range require essential protective packaging for transit. Our operations team has established a system to repurpose reusable packaging from incoming shipments onto outbound freight orders.
  • We Limit the Waste of Wood Crates and Pallets: For most customer fulfillments, our packaging is limited to recyclable cardboard tubes and ready-pack crates and limit the use of wood products outside of the pallets that sheet and plate materials are shipped on.

Our Conscious Approach When Shipping Materials to You

We know our impact on the environment is not only internal, so we have consciously been analyzing our order fulfillment packaging to make it more efficient and less wasteful. By implementing best practices such as using standardized tube packaging for large and smaller cut-to-size orders we are dumping less cardboard while simultaneously creating sustainable packaging for shipping that better meets the size of the order.




Engaging in Best Practices Thanks To Our Employees

With active participation and contribution from our employees, we implement localized as well as companywide initiatives that make a world of a difference. Here are a few great examples of employees pushing us to strive for better:



Power Saving Programs:

Our operations team has transitioned to majority electric forklifts and collaborated with our marketing team on on-site/machinery signage to remind the operators of energy conservation practices.


Paper Reduction:

Our administration team initiated personal outreach to existing customers to move to email invoicing, resulting in a 70% reduction in printed invoices for direct mail.




Ingenuity with Our UpCycling:

Sometimes pallets and wooden crates are not suitable for repurposing, so one warehouse employee in Northwood has been upcycling these pallets to create a tiny home project in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.


Reduction of Our Waste Footprint

Our operations team initiated an internal packaging audit which provided massive savings with consumables and reduced unnecessary waste going to landfills:

  • 75% Decrease in Physical Waste (Cubic Ft. of Trash per Day)
  • Increased Same-Day Fulfillment to Customers by 3% (MoM) as a Result of More Efficient Packaging



Sustainability is An Ongoing Journey Because We're All in this Together

Whether you are a customer, supplier, employee, or supply chain specialist sustainability is an ongoing, incremental, and cooperative mindset. As we continue to improve our processes, we would love to hear your ideas. We are available at (888) 527-3331 or [email protected] if you would like to get in touch with us.