10 Strategies for Making Your Workplace More Energy Efficient (and Cutting Down Your Bills!)
Business and industry are big energy consumers, so it makes sense for them to review their energy practices – not just for the environment but for their own bottom line. Whether you’re a large, medium, or small business, you can probably save more by following any of the following inexpensive energy-efficiency strategies.
- Enforce lights-off and power-off policies
The empty office with computers left on standby and lights on overnight is a massive energy drain for businesses. Enforcing lights-off and power-off policies is a simple yet often-overlooked way to save power. Place stickers on switches and reminder notes on noticeboards to keep this energy-saving tip at top of mind for staff. You can also send email reminders regularly to ensure staff follow these policies.
- Reduce heating and cooling
You can dial back the heating and cooling by a few degrees without impacting comfort in the office. In summer, keep air conditioners programmed a couple of degrees higher from what you normally have. In winter, set the thermostat several degrees lower than you normally have it. The energy savings can be significant over the course of a few months, but your staff probably won’t notice the difference.
- Switch to laptops
Use laptops instead of desktops to more than halve your energy costs from computers in the office. Buying smaller monitors can also help you save. Similarly, ink jet printers are more efficient than laser jet printers. Research your purchases before buying and you can end up saving more on energy.
- Switch to LED or CFL
Lighting likely accounts for a major portion of your energy costs. If you’re still using incandescent or halogen light bulbs, now’s the time to make the switch to LEDs or CFL lightbulbs. These types of light bulbs last longer and consume a fraction of the energy of conventional light bulbs.
- Leverage natural lighting
Natural lighting can be a power saver for any workplace. Skylights and windows are one way to bring in more natural light. Encourage staff to draw up the blinds during the day and switch the lights when it gets too dark for work.
- Eliminate energy leaks
Remove energy leaks like doors and windows left open, uninsulated walls, and doors without draft seals. Other ways your business could be leaking energy include poor maintenance of your heating and cooling appliances. For example, your thermostat, air conditioners, and heaters should be properly maintained and faulty parts replaced.
- Upgrade to efficient appliances
If you’re using an old fridge or printer, the running costs might be causing a disproportionate drain on your monthly power bills. Upgrade to appliances and peripherals with high energy ratings, and make sure the size matches your needs so you’re not paying extra for running costs. Don’t buy two large fridges if one medium-sized one does the job given the size of your business.
- Install solar panels
A solar power system, along with a solar hot water system, is probably one of the best energy-efficient investments you can make for your business. With the price of solar panel systems falling, it’s more affordable than ever to generate your own power. The investment is fully tax deductible, and if you’re in a sunny location, you might even be able to sell unused energy back to the grid for a credit on your electricity bill.
- Encourage work-from-home days
Flexible-work arrangements like work-at-home days can be a win-win proposition for the employee and the business. With fewer employees in the workplace, you’ll save on electricity, cooling and heating, and water costs. Your employees will save time and money on their commute. As long as you take measures to ensure data safety – like providing virtual private networks for work-at-home staff – you can cut costs while giving employees a special perk a day or two a week.
- Do an energy audits and adjust
Contact Platinum Electricians and get our professionals to conduct an energy audit of your workplace, or do an informal audit yourself. Our professional energy auditors are able to identify energy leaks and make recommendations for how you can save more on your energy costs.
At the same time, make sure you track your energy bills as you enforce your energy-efficiency policy. Check you’re making progress each month and make staff responsible for energy outcomes. Use energy-usage meters to identify usage at certain times, power points, or areas of your business.
As the employer, you need to take charge in turning your workplace into energy-efficient, sustainable spaces, but it’s your staff members who can put it into effect. So remember to take time to involve them and to encourage a culture of sustainability. The results – for both your utilities bills and the environment – are well worth it.
Platinum Electricians provides a full range of electrical services to business and individuals around Australia. Our focus on quality, dependable services has made us a trusted market leader in the space. For more information about how we can service your business, contact our friendly team today.