How We Do It
As an international company with multiple manufacturing plants and office sites, establishing and maintaining Herman Miller's environmental standards can be a challenging task.
That's why we created the Environmental Quality Action Team (EQAT), a cross-functional steering committee of Herman Miller employees, founded in 1989, that sets our environmental direction and priorities and measures results. The EQAT's team-based approach reflects our culture of participative management. In 1991, the EQAT created Herman Miller's first formal environmental policy statement and established zero landfill use as our first-ever environmental goal. Since then we have continually expanded our goals to make Herman Miller, Inc., a sustainable business. We now track and/or report monthly on eight strategies that monitor our progress.
After a comprehensive review of our company's environmental impact, the EQAT established several support teams to carry out specific tasks. They include:
Communications Team, responsible for communicating our environmental needs, initiatives, and performance to both internal and external audiences.Design for the Environment (DfE) Team, responsible for developing environmentally sensitive design standards for new and existing Herman Miller products. Environmental Affairs Team, responsible for regulatory compliance, as well as coordinating and assisting other company-wide environmental initiatives. Green Buildings Team, focused on the environmentally sound construction and maintenance of Herman Miller's corporate facilities. ISO 14001 Team, focused on the continuous improvement of our Environmental Management System (EMS) in pursuit of 2020 goals. Environmental Low Impact Processing group, comprised of a series of teams, one at each corporate site, with responsibility for reducing the impact of manufacturing and office waste in their designated area. Indoor Air Team, created to monitor and improve the off-gassing of our products. Energy Reduction Team, committed to reducing the amount of energy necessary to produce Herman Miller products. Packaging/Transportation Team, committed to finding ways to reduce the amount of packaging needed for both incoming and outgoing products.
All told, at Herman Miller today we have approximately 400 people working on environmental initiatives, directly or indirectly, throughout the company. However, we make every effort to influence all of our employees' attitudes and actions in support of a cleaner environment.
This includes encouraging employees to take action through volunteerism, such as adopting highways and waterways to clean up.
Additionally, many of our environmental professionals work with community groups pledged to protect their local environment.