£300m wasted on unwanted Christmas cards

2005

Sending Christmas cards to clients and suppliers is nice gesture, but according to new research, British firms will waste more than £284 million this year on cards that nobody wants.

Is your organisation sending out stacks of Christmas cards this year to clients and suppliers? It's a nice gesture, but according to new research, British firms will waste more than £284 million this year on business-related Christmas cards that nobody wants.

The study by document management specialist Macro 4 found that, of the estimated 600 million corporate Christmas cards sent this year four out of every five will be discarded.

Only half of UK office workers think business-related Christmas cards are an effective method of developing client or supplier relationships, it added.

On a more positive note, charitable giving looks set to replace the corporate Christmas cards, with 78 per cent of workers preferring their suppliers and 73 per cent preferring their employers to spend the money on a charity donation instead of sending a card, said the survey.

More than two thirds of people surveyed received corporate Christmas cards from someone they did not know, and more than half were disappointed when they realised a card came from a business contact rather than a friend or family member.

Macro 4's Mike Wenham said: "The bottom line is that UK firms are spending a lot of money on cards that people don't want and will end up in the bin.

"There is clearly a need to improve upon the 57 per cent of businesses that recycle cards and there is certainly a shift in support for greener and cheaper alternatives such sending an email or making a donation to charity.

"Business rarely realise just how much their wasted print outs cost them and the same goes for Christmas cards.

"Organisations need to think about how they can control the costs of these sorts of projects and consider the alternatives to stop losing such large amounts of cash," he added.

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