With so much on the plate of SME management and employees, it’s not hard to see why energy saving opportunities may be missed. For starters, energy is not typically top of mind for most small businesses. Accounting, human resources, sales – all of these functions need attention and often times take precedent – and there are only so many hours in the day.
According to the study, the role of energy saving was cloudy, at best, with just one in ten workers acknowledging energy efficiency as their role within the company. Most employees frequently “pass the buck” when it comes to taking responsibility for saving energy at work.
And while it may be easy for SMEs to pass the buck, finding ways to save energy around the office isn’t difficult.
Like many utilities, Xcel Energy offers a variety of resources geared for small- and medium-sized businesses. These free workshops utilize energy auditors to present one-hour energy efficiency workshops to customer groups. These technical workshops are geared towards facility/energy managers.
There also are employee workshops in Minnesota and Colorado designed to engage employees in energy conservation and changing workplace behavior to enhance efficiency and save costs. Often, materials such as posters, magnets, note pads and post-its help to assist organizations in developing creative and effective green team campaigns.
Another great opportunity to identify energy savings is a free energy assessment. The assessment takes about a half-hour, and delivers a report with energy saving recommendations and relevant programs/rebates for the facility based on the customer’s inputs and industry averages for the customer’s area.
Similarly, the small business lighting program offers a free, no obligation lighting assessment for businesses in Colorado and New Mexico (a similar program is available in Minnesota). Businesses will receive the results of the lighting audit, then may choose to implement needed improvements that are right for your business, which can earn significant rebates and lead to lower energy costs.
It’s time to stop passing the buck. With the many alternatives available, businesses don’t need a significant amount of resources to make an impact on their bottom line. Any of these options would be a great first step to making the most of missed opportunities.