Nichols has just completed our review from our first year being involved in the ISSA DEAL Pilot program. ISSA (International Sanitary Supply Association) the worldwide cleaning industry association, encouraged participation in their Distributor Efficiency Analytics & Learning (DEAL) program and Nichols was selected as one of just 20 companies to participate in the pilot. The program aimed to identify the specific needs of small and medium-size companies, as well as the training and educational programs necessary to drive meaningful improvements.
DEAL which is a comprehensive program that uses ‘big data’ and educational sessions to help association members operate their buildings and vehicles more efficiently, reduce waste, conserve natural resources, and save money.
Collectively, ISSA’s members operate more than 5,000 buildings and 25,000 delivery trucks. By implementing more sustainable operating procedures, member companies could save an estimated US$21 million annually. By employing the operating procedures the DEAL program identifies, the reduction in environmental impact is comparable to planting 2 million trees and allowing them to grow for 10 years, or removing 17,000 cars from the road. This is based on estimates provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR® and SmartWay® Transportation programs.
Results of the first year are in and this is what it collectively looks like for the 20 distributors that participated:
- $400,000 in cumulative savings (focusing on reductions in energy, water, waste and transportation costs)
- Four distribution centers achieved Energy Star certification
- One won the EPA’s National Building Competition for Distribution
- One achieved LEED for Existing Buildings Gold Certification (this would be Nichols by the way!)
Why did we want to join this group of 19 other distributors? We have been at this awhile and have accomplished a great deal over the years. Two main reasons: 1) being a more sustainable company is a journey, there are always more ways to save and being part of this group allows us to continue learning about new opportunities to improve our efficiency and 2) because we want to be an industry leader. We can show other distributors the way and also walk the talk side-by-side with our customers.
The DEAL program has now been offered to all ISSA members and we are changing our industry! We are an industry leader!