Payroll provider plants trees to reward new direct deposit customers
As an online company that provides a paperless way to manage payroll, SurePayroll hopes to show how direct deposit creates a positive environmental impact. The company is amplifying its eco-friendly efforts by both eliminating paycheck paper waste and planting trees
"It's easy for employees to do something simple that not only helps the environment but also improves security and saves time," said SurePayroll President Michael Alter. "Right now, around 75 percent of our customers use direct deposit, which equates to more than $3.75 billion in payments made via direct deposit annually. By planting a tree in honor of each new customer who uses direct deposit, we're essentially doubling up on our efforts to help the environment. Small business employees can save paper and also know they're contributing a tree that will benefit generations to come."
The USDA Forest Service has reported that in 50 years "one tree generates $30,000 in oxygen, recycles $35,000 of water, and removes $60,000 worth of air pollution."
While millions of taxpayers file electronically each year, a significant portion of the U.S. workforce still chooses to receive paper checks, and another portion does not have employers who provide direct deposit.
A study by the 2009 PayItGreen Alliance, a nonprofit organization that represents 11,000 financial institutions, showed that if one U.S. employee paid twice a month used direct deposit, he would save one pound of paper per year, eliminate the release of four gallons of wastewater and one pound of greenhouse gases, and save the employer approximately $176.
How it breaks down:
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were more than 113 million full-time workers in March 2009. Approximately half of the workforce is employed by small businesses, an estimated 57 million individuals. The PayItGreen Alliance Green Calculator  helps break down the savings, showing what would happen if all U.S. small business employees paid twice a month received direct deposit.
With direct deposit, the yearly savings would equal:
- 57 million pounds of paper
- 228 million gallons of wastewater
- The release of 57 million pounds of greenhouse gases, which equates to 228 million miles not driven in your car
Based on the 100% Replanted program statistics , this change would also mean saving 285,000 trees, as one tree provides approximately 200 pounds of paper.
According to Alter, implementing company-wide direct deposit is often the first and easiest step to creating a significant positive impact for the environment.
"We know that most small business owners want to do right by the environment and are already doing whatever they can to conserve," said Alter. "We hope that passing on this extra green incentive will encourage businesses to switch over to direct deposit sooner rather than later."
As part of May's Direct Deposit promotion, SurePayroll will donate money to the tree-planting campaign conducted by American Forests, the nation's oldest nonprofit citizens' conservation organization. SurePayroll will make monetary donations in honor of every employee of every new business customer that enrolls in its online payroll service and takes advantage of its free direct deposit feature. The promotion is valid for companies that enroll with SurePayroll May 1, 2009 through June 1, 2009.
Business owners can receive a free price quote by visiting the SurePayroll Web site  or by calling 877.954.7873.