Energy Management 101: What Exactly Is Energy Management?
According to government statistics, the average commercial enterprise in the US spends 10.74 cents per kilowatt-hour of power. Utility costs can really eat into your profits each month. This is where energy management comes in.
What is energy management? It's the practice of controlling your business' energy usage. This is good for the environment and your bottom line.
While businesses have always looked for ways to reduce costs, energy management systems have come into their own in recent years. We've already given you 10 incredible facts about energy management companies, but we're not done.
We know how confusing it can be when you're trying to save money. We've got your back.
In this article, we're going to show you exactly what energy management really means. If you're ready to start saving money, then you'll want to read this.
What is Energy Management?
At it's simplest, energy management means tracking your business' energy usage and making adjustments. There's a lot more to it than that, though.
Those in energy management jobs need to be proactive, rather than reactive. At its most basic, an energy manager will collect data about your energy usage, find ways to save energy and money, take action, and track trends once the action has been made. The fundamentals of energy management may change from business to business.
If a business wants to save energy, it can carry out what is known as an energy management audit. The company's energy usage will be audited, meter readings taken, and an appraisal made.
For the most accurate data, energy management requires the use of smart meters. These can give granular data that allows an expert in the field to examine energy usage to a ridiculous degree using specialist software.
Based on this data, an energy manager will be able to find ways to save money. For example, there could be unnecessary lighting, heating, or other systems in place during overtime hours. There could be poor insulation in parts of your building that are leeching heat.
Once these opportunities to save money have been found, you can capitalize upon them. Some of these will be very easy switches, others will require more work.
Once the changes have been made, trends will be tracked via smart meter data. This way, we can see if there are any other ways to save you cash.
Why Does Energy Management Matter?
Energy management matters for a couple of reasons. There's the impact on your business and the impact on the environment.
The Business Impact
Energy management represents an effective way to spend money. Utility bills represent a small but significant part of your costs each month. If you want to save money, then you need to address energy costs.
There are some simple switches that anyone can make. For example, you probably know about energy-saving lightbulbs, and how they can save you money. When you get an expert with an energy management degree, you start finding the less obvious aspects.
For example, you may be leaving lights on in unoccupied parts of your building outside of business hours. You may have A/C running at times that aren't essential. Energy management software can look at things in a very granular fashion, giving us incredible insight into your energy usage.
Cutting costs doesn't just mean saving money now, either. Your bills depend on the overall energy costs in your area. If those costs go up, your costs will too, which could put your business at risk.
Think of energy management as a risk management enterprise as much as a money-saving one.
The Environmental Impact
The USA and Canada consume 50 percent of the power consumed by the world's richest countries. Energy generation is a massive contributor to climate change. Limiting your energy usage is great news for the planet as much as it is for your bottom line.
Making your business greener is great for its image, too. You could get new investors or customers if your environmental-friendliness is recognized.
Energy Management FAQs
Now that you know what energy management is and how it can help you, it's time to answer some of the most common questions people have about this field.
Do All Businesses Use Energy Management Companies?
No, which is a shame. The business benefits of energy management are becoming much more widely known today, which means we predict more and more companies will start using them.
Energy management systems can be run from within a company or by a consultant. Larger companies may have a dedicated staff member whose sole job is to monitor usage!
Can Small Businesses Benefit?
No matter the size of your business, energy management can help you. Even if you have just one office, energy management can still save you a lot of cash each year.
How Long Will it Take to See the Benefits?
Once any recommendations are put into action, you should see benefits in the next billing period.
Do I Need Smart Meters to Hire an Energy Management Company?
No, you don't need smart meters. If necessary, an energy manager can read your meters the old-fashioned way.
The problem with this approach is that we don't get access to the same level of data that we do with smart meters. We can't look at data on an hour by hour level in any practical way.
How Much Does Energy Management Services Cost?
The cost will vary from company to company. The rate will change depending on the size of your business, too.
Keeping the Lights On
Energy management is crucial for businesses in the modern era. If you want to survive as a business, you need to look for ways to save money. Energy management services can help you do just that.
Do you have any questions about energy management that weren't answered in this post? Then get in touch with us, and we'll do our best to help you out.