Shredding companies vary slightly throughout the UK – but the general idea is fairly simple! If you have paperwork that you need (or want) to have disposed securely then you can pay a fee for a shredding company to take care of this for you.

Why use a shredding company?

If you are a business owner you have a legal requirement to dispose of your commercial waste using a licensed contractor. Paper generated as a byproduct of your business is classed as commercial waste, so disposing of it in landfill or at a residential recycling centre is both irresponsible and illegal.

All UK Environment Agency licensed shredding companies are licensed to dispose of commercial waste, and in most cases it will cost the same as using a waste disposal contractor alone. This means that whether you shred yourself using a cheap, unreliable office shredder and pay for the shreds to be taken away, or you pay a shredding company to take care of the whole process for you, there is likely to be no difference in cost. So why not get your confidential documents shredded properly and have the added peace of mind (and paperwork) that comes with using a professional company.

What is the process from start to finish?

Once you have found a shredding service that will come to you and shred your documents – there are 3 basic steps;

  • The shredding company will attend your premises and collect the waste you have to go – this can be stored in bags, archive boxes or even loose.
  • They will take it away and shred it in an industrial shredding unit, which looks sort of like this
  • Once your paper has been shredded the shredding company will send you a certificate of destruction which will be stamped and signed to say your waste has been securely disposed 🙂

I only have a very small amount of paper – will shredding companies still come to me?

We get asked this question all the time! Whilst it is true that there are some shredding companies in the UK that are very expensive (think huge lorries and noisy machinery) there are also a lot of smaller companies that provide service to small businesses, sole traders and even individuals with very small quantities of paper to be shredded. Shop around and you will find a shredding company that will visit your home or office, take away your paperwork, shred it and provide all certification for less than the cost of a cheap office shredder!

So how do I find a shredding company??

A simple search on Google for shredding companies in your local area should bring up enough options for you to shop around and get the best price possible. It is a very competitive market and you are encouraged to haggle the price if you don’t want to pay the first price you are given!

Even if there are few shredding companies in your immediate area, don’t be put off – most shredding companies in the UK cover large areas with fleets of smaller vehicles, meaning you ca often get a competitive quote from a shredding service provider based 50-100 miles away.

Good luck fining a service provider, and don’t forget to check the Environment Agency register to make sure the shredding company is a licensed waste carrier – this is required by law in the UK!

Happy shredding!