When it comes to your business’s success, energy is an indispensable ingredient. Unfortunately, it can also make up a significant portion of monthly outgoings - power can be a large expense for any company and it’s all too easy to end up paying more than you should for your business energy. Energy wastage and uncompetitive tariffs are two of the most common culprits behind inflated energy bills.
Before you can reduce your business’s energy consumption (and its energy bills), you’ll need to know how and when your business uses its energy. Conducting an energy audit for your business it will help you to both understand your usage and identify ways to start bringing high energy costs back down to earth.
A business energy audit will analyse your company’s energy expenditure and establish ways to improve its management. To conduct an audit for your business, you’ll need to examine your company extensively, from the materials your premises is made of, to lighting and controls, heating, ventilation and air conditioning, electrical systems and machinery. For nearly every business, there will be a number of positive changes that can be made to reduce energy usage, lowering both your company’s carbon footprint and its bills.
A full business energy audit will also include a review of your business’s electricity and gas tariffs. This should help determine whether you’re using the best plan and supplier for your company’s unique needs, and, it will guard against straying onto expensive out of contract rates.
A professional, over-the-phone business energy audit involves speaking to an energy expert who will use a detailed questionnaire to review your company’s energy usage. Over the course of a short phone call, you’ll be asked a series of questions about your building, working patterns, energy consumption and current energy plan.
If you choose to conduct an audit for your business over the phone, it will be helpful to have a recent energy bill to hand. The energy expert will then use this information to draw up a report detailing your current consumption figures. Based on this report, they’ll create a comprehensive and costed plan that you can follow to reduce your energy usage and make savings. You should get a hard copy of the report and plan by email or post.
If you opt for an on-site energy audit for your business, a qualified and accredited energy surveyor will come to your place of work and undertake an extensive review. Over the course of a day, they’ll look at a wide range of things, from the layout and construction of your premises, to how you use your equipment, the efficiency of things such as air conditioning units, lighting and heating systems, the habits of your operations and staff and your current energy tariff and supplier.
From this, they’ll draw up a full report and an action plan that outlines ways to improve how your business consumes energy. A professional energy audit for your business should also tell you how much any changes will cost and the effect they’ll have.
If you’d prefer, you can conduct an audit for your business yourself. It might not be as thorough as a professional audit, but it will give you a good base from which to begin making energy savings.
You should start an energy audit for your business by looking at data from your previous bills about the cost per quarter. This will help you to identify the months when the most energy is used - usually during winter - and where to focus your attention.
Once you’ve done this, try to find reasons to explain any high periods of usage and begin to plan where and how to reduce this. Making the change to energy efficient lighting and improving your insulation are two easy places to begin.
Next, compile an energy-saving checklist. This is an important part of a business energy audit and will help you to break down usage between buildings, rooms and departments. Do a walk around your workplace and examine lighting, heating, cooling, ventilation, and equipment use in each area. For example, is heat is being lost through windows or draughts? Are lights in one particular area left on unnecessarily?
From this you should be able to form a manageable plan to reduce consumption. Make sure your staff are part of the solution by providing training on best practices for energy use, such as turning off computers at the close of each day. If your costs seem high compared to your usage, it might be time to re-look at your tariff and supplier and to compare them to what else is on offer in the market.
To find out more about how to conduct an audit for your business and how it can save your company money, call Make It Cheaper today on 0800 970 0077 Or, if you’d prefer, leave your details at the top of the page and we’ll call you back.