A step-by-step guide to conducting a simple business energy audit
Tens of thousands of British families struggle with high energy prices, but for businesses, it is even worse. High energy bills undercut our ability to compete with imports and conflict with public pressure to cut our carbon footprints.
How you can cut down on fuel consumption depends on your business and the premises in which you conduct it, but one saving is universal – finding a lower tariff.
A competitive energy market only controls prices if everyone looks for a lower one. When you don’t compare business electricity prices you not only pay more but you also remove the incentive for power companies to charge less.
Lack of transparency makes it hard to compare one business electricity quote with another. Offers can depend on the region in which you are located, the quantity you consume, when you consume it, how you’re willing to pay…and so forth. The better price comparison sites take all these things into consideration so you can realistically compare business electricity prices.
Conduct a business energy audit
A business energy audit helps in two ways. First, in the course of conducting one, you almost always discover ways in which you are wasting energy. Second, working out exactly how much you need is essential in order to get an accurate business electricity quote. Here are a few of the simple things you should look into.
Drafts: drafty windows and swinging doors waste heat in winter and force air conditioning to work harder in summer. Fit door springs.
Switches: Hardly anyone switches lights off at work. Lights controlled by timers and movement sensors could be a good long-term investment. The same is true for numerous other appliances: even in “standby” they consume power.
Light bulbs: Don’t assume “energy saver” bulbs are saving anything. Many are needlessly expensive, provide poor light, and don’t last anywhere near the time it says on the packet. Monitor how many you use each month. Check which type they are – LED bulbs cost more but usually last longer than CFL types.
Insulation: Why are we less concerned about insulating our workplaces than our homes? Simple loft insulation quickly recoups the installation cost.
Kettles: Surveys indicate that constantly boiling kettles is a substantial business overhead. The main problem is that they’re nearly always over-filled. If your workforce is big enough, consider providing a vending machine instead (it will only dispense the correct amount each time).
Work stations: It is important not to cut power to machines that may be busy, but your IT staff can set up computers to auto-save open documents and power down when not busy.
Printers and photocopiers: Some businesses still routinely print and copy every document that crosses a desk. Most is then shredded unread or put into expensive leased storage. Embrace the 21st century – go digital!
95% of businesses waste money on energy, so plan your business energy audit today and compare your business energy tariff to find out if you are paying more than you should be.