Adopting a Sustainable, People-Driven Business Model
By adopting a “people-driven” business model, Fourstar Connections has embarked on the path to developing human, environmental, social, and financial capital. It is our vision—and our commitment—to help you find a better way by providing services and solutions to tackle a wide range of manufacturing needs, all the while being acutely aware of our environmental footprint and our societal impacts. At Fourstar, we draw no distinction between sustainable measures and socially responsible practices—we consider them intrinsic equals and core values.
So how is our commitment to finding a better way integrated with our sustainability goals and objectives? Here are some of the initiatives we’ve undertaken over the course of years:
- 100KW Solar Array Installation
In 2014, we installed 100KW solar array panels that reduced our monthly utility bill from $4,500 to $1,200. As part of the installation, we upgraded all (7) HVAC units to more efficient units, and completed significant roof repairs in preparation for the installation of the panels.
- Replacing Fluorescent Fixtures
In 2013, we replaced 77 of our fluorescent fixtures in our shop from standard tubes to T5 fixtures, in an attempt to conserve energy. LED fixtures will replace all these fixtures in 2017, decreasing the wattage consumption and cutting our utility bill in half.
- Recycling and Reusable Packaging Programs
Fourstar recycles 100 percent of its cardboard, and in 2013, we decreased our trash by 40 percent. To eliminate excess packaging in the shipment of our products, we have also implemented multiple reusable packaging programs with our customers.
- Green 401(k) Savings and Investment Plan
Fourstar was recently part of the MVP/HIP Investor 401(k) Sustainability Assessment and “Know What You Own” Education and Scoring Program, a unique program that has been featured in Corporate Responsibility Magazine’s COMMIT Forum discussion on “Engaging Employees via Sustainable 401(k) Investing.” This year, we increased our participation and contribution rates in our 401(k) and engaged our employees by offering a unique, sustainable, and impact-investing education program, and by adding more socially responsible investing options for their retirement assets.
- Holistic Wellness Program
We are integrating a robust holistic wellness program that reaches beyond traditional wellness programs to include education about “The Main Toxins to Avoid” in foods, personal care, and household products that are harmful to people and the environment. In addition to being a part of the Weight Watchers program, we also educate our employees on how to deal more effectively with stress. In 2017, we will be creating a “wellness” resource library and area at Fourstar where employees can read about these issues and have a place to “re-charge” during their break time. A happy, healthy, productive workforce supports our people-driven business model—powering successful collaborations, both internally and with customers.
This year, we wish to advance our sustainability efforts by applying for a Massachusetts Workforce Training Grant—a first-of-its-kind grant request. Upon approval, this grant will help us fund training programs around sustainability, supply chain transparency, and reporting to the carbon disclosure project—all things that will enable Fourstar to continue to lead and raise the sustainability bar for the cable assembly industry.
If you are a manufacturer looking to adopt similar initiatives, or a customer looking for sustainable and socially responsible cable assemblies or complex box build solutions, we would love to hear from you and find out more about your needs.