Front of House Waste Collection: the Tip of an Operational Iceberg [Part 2]

By setting goals to reduce collections to no more than 8,000 per year (an 80% gain) and introducing recycling to the front-of-house, raising diversion to 40% higher than the current level, a single hospital on average could divert 50 tons of recycling from landfills. There are 5,686 registered hospitals in the United States alone, according to the 2013 AHA (American Hospital Association) Annual Survey. That’s 284,300 tons of recycling that could be diverted from waste landfills from US hospitals alone.

Going a step further in eliminating wastefulness, healthcare centers could say they’ll cut the number of trash cans by 20 – 30%, promise their stakeholders that there will be no overflows, and introduce composting to put icing on the cake. All in front-of-house, the part of the operation that has been most challenging to improve.

If they did this, they’d find they’re making a step change in cost structure, not just costs, moving the needle in the right direction for the environment, and upgrading the quality of life for patients, guests, and staff. They would be doing their jobs in a radically different, better and more rewarding, way.

The enabler of this is a new process and technology paradigm, one which starts by saying that front-of-house waste collection and recycling is a process like any other: open to improvement and the application of modern techniques, like just-in-time.

The Bigbelly system enables just that: a management console collects dozens of data points, including fullness, from a networked system of IoT Internet of Things waste and recycling collection stations. This data is used to guide collection operations and shape performance.

The outcomes are transformative. The iceberg under the surface melts and the part above it becomes a fixture of the scenery: people notice Bigbelly, use it and love it, want to photographed with it. It’s no longer just a trash can. It’s a valuable communication platform holding valuable real-estate in your healthcare facility.

Bigbelly’s vision of public spaces is that technology works for waste collection and recycling, just like it does for almost every other process in our lives. And with the right tools and techniques, efficiency follows, costs fall, and people and the environment win.



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