Reducing your business’s energy expenses is simple if you know how to go about it. Of course, depending on the size and the type of your business your energy needs and usage will vary, but regardless of the differences there are several simple steps any business can follow to reduce spending.
The first step to take when you would like to reduce energy costs is to observe where your energy usage goes to. You can do this by requesting an energy audit from your supplier. This can help you determine where your business uses the most energy, and therefore where it could cut down on usage.
Indeed, one of the best ways to change the amount your business spends on energy is to ensure that you are as efficient as possible in your use of gas and electricity within your workplace. Using fewer units of energy not only means that you will be charged less by your supplier, but moreover means you will have to pay less taxes as every unit of energy used is taxed.
Another good way to lower the cost of your bills at the end of the month is to compare business energy deals available to you. With the help of websites such as ours, switching services can be easy and effective. This allows your business to be associated with an energy deal that corresponds to its size and needs - you will save money simply by not being placed needlessly on a higher tariff.
To further reduce unnecessary energy usage, implementing innovative technology in your workplace can help you further reduce energy costs over time without you even lifting a finger (once you’ve set them up). Indeed, whereas a lot of these require an initial cost, the benefits of long-term savings will more than make up for your investment.
After having audited your workplace to understand where your energy supply is most used, switching to smart meters can also help to regularly monitor the activity in your workplace, so you can continuously keep a detailed track of your energy usage.
Bearing in mind that lighting usually makes up to a quarter of energy usage in businesses, making use of more sustainable lighting, such as LED lamps or compact fluorescent lights, will automatically cut down on energy going to lighting. This is because they are more efficient in converting your input energy units into lighting. Moreover, they usually have the added benefit of requiring less main than conventional light bulbs, further allowing you to save on maintenance costs. Further implementing motion sensor lights will ensure no lights are needlessly kept on, even if staff forget to turn them off.
Approximately 40% of energy consumption goes to heating or cooling workplaces for the average SME, so installing programmable thermostats would allow you to have more control on energy related to heating and cooling by allowing you to choose when the devices turn on and off.
For example, you could program your heating to turn on half an hour before staff arrive in the morning or to turn off in meeting rooms at non-peak hours. You could also program your air-conditioning to turn off in the summer once your workplace reaches an average set temperature, such as 22°C.
Another way to help you save on energy usage for your business is to keep your staff conscious of workplace habits. A lot of the causes of needless energy spending come from unconscious bad habits we all tend to have when we do things, for example leaving to a meeting in a rush and forgetting to snooze our monitors or leaving the light on.
By putting up reminders and posters around the office, you can gently prompt your staff to take up good habits for saving money on your business’s energy consumption. Tell them to keep an eye out for unnecessary open doors or windows - in the winter this will cause you to spend money on heating the outdoors or needing more time to heat up a small area. Conversely, in the summer you will be letting hot air in as you are trying to cool the place down or allowing unused warmer rooms to heat up a space that is in use.
As mentioned earlier, reminding your staff to turn off appliances not in use, such as desktops, lights, or projectors, will help you save on unnecessary energy usage. Even small things such as only boiling the right amount of water you need in the kettle can help towards this cause, as excess hot water left may cool down completely and simply be re-boiled many times by different people.
Finally, it can be useful to remember that, while being more sustainable in your use of energy you can clearly reduce related energy costs for your business, energy sustainability and efficiency will usually also improve the overall brand image and reputation of your business (with both investors and customers), putting you in a better position to succeed as an organisation overall.