Commercial shredding companies generally offer a one-off service and a regular one.

  • If your company produces a lot of confidential waste then you're likely to need a regular monthly collection.
  • If you're using paper shredding services for the first time and need a regular service, you may also have a backlog of documents and data to deal with. In this case, you could use a yearly bulk shredding service as well.

Options for paid document shredding services

  • Regular collections of document bags, these bags are usually sealable but are not as secure as lockable bins or cabinets
    • Usually monthly collections
    • Best for small businesses and home offices
  • Regular collections of documents in secure containers such as lockable cabinets and lockable wheelie bins
    • Collections available weekly, fortnightly, monthly or every eight weeks
    • Suitable for any size business as containers and collection frequencies can be set to your business's requirements
  • Ad-hoc collections for one-off shredding. You can choose to store your documents in bags, wheelie bins or skips for ad hoc services, depending on how much waste your business has. Alternatively, companies such as Russell Richardson can collect confidential waste in archive boxes or collect waste that has palletised.

For all of the above options, you can choose from the following:

  • On-site (mobile) shredding - where vehicles carrying industrial shredders shred documents on your premises so you can observe if you want to
  • Off-site shredding - where the shredding company takes bags, bins or containers away and shreds the contents at its depot

What's the difference between on-site mobile document shredding and off-site document shredding?

  • Mobile shredding - your waste paper is shredded on-site in a special van with an on-board shredder
    • Takes place on your premises
    • Fewer people handle the documents
    • Documents are destroyed in mobile shredding trucks
    • You can watch the shredding as it happens
    • You receive a certificate of destruction after shredding

If you think mobile shredding is the right service for you, read more about mobile paper shredding services here.

  • Off-site shredding - a specialist company takes your waste paper away and shreds it on its premises
    • A more cost-effective service
    • Ideal for shredding documents in bulk or large amounts of confidential waste
    • Documents are transported to a secure depot for shredding
    • Involves more handling but is completely secure
    • You receive a certificate of destruction after shredding

With both services, you'll be given document shredding bags or containers (such as lockable wheelie bins or cabinets) for storing your unwanted documents. At Russell Richardson we shred your documents within 24 hours and then recycle the paper.

Alternatively, some shredding companies will allow you to drop confidential waste off at their premises, provided you ring beforehand to arrange a suitable time to do this and there may be a charge for this service. This is a service we offer at Russell Richardson.

How to choose the best document shredding service for your business

The service you choose for your business will depend on:

  • how much confidential waste paper you generate
  • how quickly you generate it
  • how secure you want the paper shredding service to be

The table below shows which service best suits which type of business.

Service options

Suited to

Mobile secure shredding

  • Businesses that generates a lot of confidential waste
  • Businesses that need the highest security and want the peace of mind of observing confidential waste being destroyed

Off-site secure shredding

  • Businesses that generate a lot of confidential waste
  • Businesses that don't need to see the waste being destroyed

No contract, adhoc, shredding service

  • Businesses that don't generate confidential waste on a regular basis
  • Companies or individuals having a clear out or mobbing premises

Bulk shredding

  • Large companies that regularly generate a significant amount of confidential waste

We've put together a complete guide to your options for document shredding - ”On-site and mobile shredding: what is it and how much does it cost?

For more information on confidential waste disposal read our guide What is confidential waste and how can I ensure my business disposes of it securely?

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