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As a business owner, you will have a number of goals to accomplish each year. One of these, of course, is to make more sales, as you do need to make a profit. Another will be to save money, as you will then have more to put in your reserves for growth opportunities and emergency situations.
There are lots of ways to make savings in your business, from spending less on unnecessary items to sourcing cheaper suppliers. Another way to save money is to spend less on your energy bills. This isn’t always easy, as many businesses rely on energy-intensive machinery and computer systems, as well as heating and lighting. Still, it is possible to bring down energy costs, and we will list a few ideas on how to do so below.
#1: Commit to an energy audit
Your utility company might offer this service, but if not, there are professional auditing companies who will do the energy audit for you. An audit entails a detailed overview of your energy usage, and you will be given guidance on how you can use your energy more efficiently and save money. This is especially useful if you don’t know where to start yourself, or if there are hidden energy drains in your business. An annual audit will stand you in good stead, so consider the option.
#2: Clear your air vents
It takes a lot more power to move hot and cold air through your business premises when the vents are obstructed by furniture or office equipment, so make sure the airway is clear. This will be something you might naturally do anyway, as you wouldn’t feel the benefits of your HVAC systems otherwise, but it’s still worth pointing out to you.
#3: Maintain your HVAC system
Your HVAC system will run much more efficiently if it is maintained on a regular basis. This includes the various components within, including the filters, condenser, and the chiller systems, be that a water or air-cooled chiller. When everything is running as it should, you will see a drop in your energy costs, so schedule in the relevant professional to carry out the maintenance work for you.
#4: Switch off your office equipment
When a piece of equipment isn’t being used, turn it off. This includes turning if off standby, as you will still be draining energy when it is in this mode. Admittedly, the cost of keeping something on standby is relatively small – it’s an estimated £6 per year for a computer – but when you consider the number of computers and other pieces of equipment you use in your business, that cost will multiply.
#5: Switch energy supplier
This is an obvious solution, we know, but within your busy schedule, this might be something you leave off your to-do list. By switching to a different energy supplier, you could make significant savings, so use a price comparison service to check. You could also use the services of a company who will make the switch for you, such as Look After My Bills who will automatically find the best deals for you. Such a service has proven successful for a lot of people, so it is worth considering, especially when you’re too busy to make the switch yourself.
#6: Purchase energy-efficient equipment
If you’re still using older pieces of tech in your business, it might be that they’re doing you no favours when it comes to your energy usage. There comes a time when you have to bite the bullet and replace your older items with something new. Of course, this will be advantageous to you anyway, as the newer tech will have updated features that your business can benefit from. When buying, look for the A+ energy rating, as this is your assurance that the item you are buying will reduce your energy costs. And while you might baulk at the idea of the expense of something new, the reduced energy bills will offset the cost of the appliance you have bought.
#7: Introduce remote working
Photo by Aleks Marinkovic on Unsplash
Remote working has become more commonplace in recent months, and this is because of the COVID-19 crisis, of course. If your business has adapted in this way, consider it for the long-term future of your business. Your employees will have a better work-life balance if you do, and you won’t have to face the burden of the energy bills that stem from the work they do on your premises. Check out this guide on setting up remote working for your business for some detailed advice.
#8: Insulate your premises
Despite the expense of insulation, you will make long-term savings on your energy bills, and both your employees and your customers will feel the benefit. So, consider wall and ceiling insulation, as well as new windows if your budget can stretch to that. If you don’t have the money to splash out on insulation, you could simply use weatherstripping and caulk to seal any gaps that are letting cold air permeate through.
#9: Use motion detectors
Motion detectors turn lights on and off when people enter and leave a room, so this is another way to save energy. These are especially useful if you have employees or customers using your premises that forget to flip the switch themselves when leaving particular areas.
#10: Remind your employees to follow good habits
A list of rules might be all it takes to get your employees into good habits. Stick these up around those areas where energy might be used, as they will act as gentle reminders. Such rules can include:
- Close outside doors
- Turn off the lights
- Power down your computer
- Don’t overfill the kettle
- Don’t let taps overrun
You can probably think of other rules that pertain to the employees who are a part of your business.
The more you can do to reduce energy costs the better, for both world and money-saving benefits. Consider our suggestions then, and commit to research to discover other energy-saving ideas.