As more businesses reopen as we move through phases two and three of the Roadmap for reopening society and businesses many companies are taking the opportunity to take stock and  review their business and become more efficient. 

According to Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI), the average SME could reduce its energy bill by up to 30% by implementing energy-efficiency measures. It says that up to 10% can be achieved at little or no capital cost.  

If you are looking for immediate energy savings here are some cost-savings measures you can implement: 

Get your lights right  

  • Take advantage of natural light. Clear away any items blocking windows, such as filing cabinets.  
  • Turn off all lights when not in use. Lights in meeting rooms and storage areas are often left on unnecessarily.  

Get smart with electronics 

  • Ensure you have energy-efficient equipment. Laptop computers consume significantly less electricity than desktop computers. But if you are using desktops, make sure you have energy-efficient monitors.  
  • When replacing any equipment, be it computers and printers or machinery and motors, choose items with the highest possible efficiency. They might cost more but payback through cost-savings will be swift, and worth it. 
  • Switch off all electronics when not in use. This means turning them off at the plug. Even in standby mode they are using 20% of the energy they would consume if they were switched on. 

Get employees on board 

  • Energy savings and energy efficiency should be part of your business culture. Appoint an employee energy ambassador to oversee and manage use of energy – they can encourage workers to take simple cost-saving measures such as boiling just the amount of water they need, keeping the fridge door closed and turning off kitchen appliances when not in use.  
  • Print less. Reducing the use of paper is not only good for the environment but reduces the energy required to run printers and photocopiers.  

Reduce peak demand 

  • If you can, stagger work patterns or create a shift system so all your workers are not on-site when electricity costs are at a premium.  
  • Check with Electric Ireland for the best price plans for your business. 

Make better use of office space 

  • If some or many of your employees are working remotely, it may be time to look critically at your office space. You might find that you could well do with a smaller facility which could yield a significant cash benefit and have lower energy costs. Encourage and maintain remote working as far as possible – making good use of virtual platforms for meetings. This again will help cut energy costs – and contribute to a cleaner environment.
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