Energy Efficiency for SMEs

Monday 08 February 2016

One of the best ways for businesses to stay on top of their energy bills is to put an energy saving policy in place. Of course, switching suppliers and changing tariffs can save hundreds, even thousands each year, but by reducing your energy usage you could stand to save even more.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change have released a guide for SMEs on how to be energy efficient in the workplace. There’s lots of really useful advice in the guide which details the simple changes you can make to start saving energy and money right away!

This guide is based on the experiences of a number of professionals who have been helping businesses improve their energy efficiency for many years. Everything in the guide is practical, tried and tested. We’ve picked out some of our favourite tips on cutting down on energy use in your business...

Heating

To quote the guide: “Heating costs increase by around 8% for every 1 degree increase. Turning it down 2 degrees would save £140 on a £1,000 bill”. For just a small change, big money can be saved. Think about installing timers or thermostats to prevent energy being used in space heating unnecessarily. Forgetting to turn off the heating just a few times could cost your business hundreds of pounds.

Lighting

Turning lights off when you leave an unoccupied room saves energy. There is an often cited myth that leaving lights on saves more energy than turning them on and off. This is simply not true, even when turning them off for a short period of time. Getting employees to turn off lights regularly is a simple way to save energy, but thinking long term, it could be wise to invest in energy efficient lighting equipment. According to the guide: “Upgrading old spotlights with more efficient LEDs in communal areas is saving a medium-sized hotel £1,533 and 10 tonnes of CO2 a year”.

Equipment

Leaving computers and equipment on standby can help increase productivity, however over the course of the year, multiple pieces of equipment can incur a noticeable cost. Encourage staff to turn off equipment if they will be away from their workstations for a long period of time and turn off plugs (where possible) at the end of the day. Communal spaces are areas of the workplace that often get forgotten about. Check that microwaves and kettles are switched off at the plugs at the end of the day, also make sure that kitchen equipment is only being used the amount that it needs to be. This means filling up dishwashers before using them, and only boiling the amount of water you need to when making hot drinks.

You can view the full SME Guide to Energy Efficiency here. We also have some great tips on reducing energy in the workplace. If you would like to reduce your energy consumption and save money on your bills, just hop on the phone to us today!