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A strategic energy management program is crucial to operational efficiency and reducing energy costs

A strategic energy management program is crucial to operational efficiency and reducing energy costs

The more you know about your energy infrastructure and consumption, the more effectively you can manage your energy, improve operational efficiencies, and achieve sustainable energy costs.

Attitudes towards energy are changing. Organizations often consider energy as a cost that needs to be managed and reduced. This approach is a short-term strategy that could lead to a missed opportunity – one that improves energy efficiency, monetizes your energy, improves corporate social image, and yields a sustainable energy infrastructure.

As your business grows and demands on your energy usage increase, creating an energy efficient infrastructure to support these changes is crucial. Energy Managers are looking for energy management solutions that give them better control of how they use and source energy while meeting increasing demands, improving efficiency, and reducing carbon emissions.

There are a number of ways to create an energy efficient infrastructure, from ensuring the right technology is in place to encouraging a change in mindset about energy and energy consumption across the organization.

Optimize your energy strategy with device-level data

The first step toward making energy infrastructure improvements is to understand how your business consumes energy. Gaining actionable insights about your current energy consumption is crucial to making intelligent decisions that optimize your energy strategy. Device-level monitoring enables you to thoroughly analyze your business’ energy usage, identify areas of inefficiency and gain a deeper understanding of your energy infrastructure.

Many businesses use building management systems that provide them with a top-level view of their energy use, but this method doesn’t offer the granularity of device-level data. Tracking the energy consumption of each device provides your business with real-time granular visibility of your operations and process, giving you insight into the specific actions you can take to optimize and monetize your energy.

Device-level monitoring provides the granular data your business needs to understand exactly where costs can be saved or avoided – reducing energy waste. Energy waste is not always necessarily caused by the devices themselves but sometimes by employees who operate them. Specific monitoring at the device-level can inform employees of actions they can implement, help reduce energy waste and boost efficiency.

Here are 5 reasons why a single end-to-end view of your energy footprint using device-level data should sit at the heart of your energy strategy.

Make investing in your energy infrastructure a priority to achieve sustainable costs

Device-level data is proving to be invaluable in helping organizations understand and manage their energy more effectively, and forward-thinking businesses are using this actionable intelligence to change how they source and use energy. Energy investment may be low on the list of business priorities, but it should not be – investing in your energy infrastructure is key to creating better operational efficiency and reducing costs. It’s also key to boost the resilience and sustainability of your business.

The energy industry is no stranger to disruption and uncertainty. Rising costs, power outages and regulatory policies only increase the appetite for better energy efficiency. In the midst of all this uncertainty, soaring demand leading to increased power generation means that existing electricity and gas networks will need to be more resilient to withstand severe weather conditions caused by climate change.

In addition, customer habits and expectations are shifting  – they are demanding more corporate sustainability from businesses. According to a 2017 study by GFK, 56% of consumers say they are willing to pay more to use environmentally-friendly (“green”) products. This is an increase of 3% since 2010 and presents a substantial financial opportunity for companies to satisfy increasingly environmentally-conscious customers who wish to buy from companies that are taking sustainability seriously. In research by Centrica Business Solutions, one quarter of respondents said that advanced energy solutions have not only improved their reputation but provided additional revenue too.

To be future-ready and to bridge the transition from traditional to sustainable, companies should start to implement distributed energy solutions that give them greater control of their power supply and satisfy customer demand for cleaner, more sustainable sources – and even generate their own power onsite to boost resilience. Renewable energy sources such as solar photovoltaic (PV) panels can have a powerful impact on your corporate social image and bottom line. But they’re not just green, they’re also financially beneficial. Instead of relying on fossil fuels, you can power your business with clean and efficient solar power – and even store excess solar power onsite to shave peak energy usage, decrease costs and provide a consistent source of power in the event of an outage when coupled with battery technology.

The need for energy infrastructure improvement should be seen as an opportunity. Businesses that invest in improving their infrastructure are not only seeing lower energy costs and better energy efficiency, but they are leaving their customers with a positive impression of their company as a pioneer in the worldwide movement towards sustainability. There are specific measures you can take to future-proof your energy infrastructure.

Prioritize energy management and infrastructure upgrades by utilizing innovative financing solutions

Powering your energy ambitions and turning your energy challenges into a sustainable business advantage doesn’t need to require significant capital investment in distributed energy technologies and solutions. Deciding how to fund these energy efficiency improvements can sometimes be a challenge, and many organizations do not have the capital to fund the initiative themselves. However, there are various methods available to organizations looking to invest in energy infrastructure upgrades that boost efficiency.

Currently, traditional funding options are most prevalent. According to research by Centrica Business Solutions, two-fifths of companies have funded initiatives themselves, and a third have used government incentives and bank loans. Now businesses are beginning to adopt more innovative funding methods, such as shared risk models and leasing arrangements.

It is important that organizations consider flexible funding options for their energy efficiency investments and explore how different funding options could help support wider business objectives. Embracing a flexible approach to financing means that organizations can prioritize energy infrastructure and efficiency upgrades. The funding option that is best suited to your organization will depend on a number of factors. Learn how you can approach investment to increase energy efficiency and discover the financing solution that works best for your business.

Partner with an experienced energy provider to build your energy management strategy

Working with an energy solutions expert, such as Centrica Business Solutions, will ensure you have the best energy management strategy in place to build a sustainable energy future. We will help your organization create an energy efficient infrastructure by using our distributed energy solutions that optimize and monetize your energy, turning this business necessity from an expense to an asset. 

Find out how Centrica Business Solutions can help power your energy performance. Contact us today.