1. Going green is a fundamental objective of the European Union and of most contemporary societies in general. How important is that for Cartridge World and what measures are you taking in that direction?
Cartridge World the franchise was founded 25 years ago on the principal of re-use. That continues to this day as we encourage the return of every single-use plastic ink and toner cartridge that we put into the market. Our customers return them to us and we as licensed waste handlers can we then export them within the EU to be sorted and re-used or recycled and we are proud of our zero-waste actions. We have saved about ¾ of a million cartridges from landfill in Cyprus since our start in 2002. Our own brand replacement ink and toner cartridges are often filled to a higher yield to last longer and cost a lot less than the major brands, all our products are ISO certified and come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
Because recycling and reuse is central to our business practices we promote also the REPAIR of Printers, PC’s and laptops and our technicians in our 6 stores across the island are firstly available to talk through the problem with and get a prompt fix, this is far more personal than dropping off the device in a big store with no idea of the time it will take to return it. We offer free-diagnosis to encourage a repair culture and undertake work on a no fix no-fee basis.
Finally we offer to take back end-of-life printers, laptops and pc’s from our customers which we then recycle through WEEE Cyprus, the Collective System for Waste Management of Electrical and Electronic Equipment.
2. Please tell us a few things about your internships programme. How’s that progressing and what are the main objectives?
We have operated a revolving door internship program for several years, our candidates stay 6 months in Cyprus and are given a wide ranging introduction to business. We offer currently 6 different internships; that specialize in different areas such as Marketing, Graphic design, 3D Printing, eLearning and broader topics such as; An introduction to business and As technician in a retail store. I got inspiration from when my own daughter applied for internships as part of her university degree course and it led me to offer the same package she got, so our internships are paid a small sum monthly that contributes to their expenses. We have 3 interns currently, Olayinka is Nigerian and applied from the European University Cyprus where he is studying for his masters and he commutes from Nicosia to our head office in Limassol to work on our website administration.
We have another 2 who recently joined us; Maziar is Iranian and studies in Paris, Nastassia is from Belarus and studies in Italy they are both involved with our eLearning software and Learning-Management-System, creating internal communication training modules for our team to keep our staff updated on new product launches and procedures. They both applied through the Erasmus program. ErasmusIntern.org provides an integrated market place that aims at bringing together internship providers and students seeking an internship opportunity abroad, we simply post our vacancies on the platform and candidates apply and go through our selection process. I always make the point to candidates that our objective is to achieve a win-win for both our company and themselves.
We benefit from their ideas, energy, and contribution to the tasks set and they gain valuable experience and transferrable skills that go some way to help their future prospects. I can say that every candidate who has spent an internship with us has been of great value and left their own positive contribution, each has written their leaving report detailing how beneficial the experience was to them. I hope my short explanation can encourage more businesses to extend an opportunity to youngsters who are very serious about furthering their personal development.