Changes in the energy space in recent years now enable organizations to generate greater returns from their "energy investment." Such developments include:
- Consolidation and cross-selling within the broader energy utility industry.
- Falling commodity prices but rising transmission and transportation charges.
- Utility incentives encouraging investment in efficiency projects to reduce energy use.
- Advanced equipment and technologies for optimizing energy use.
- Growing stakeholder pressure to improve sustainability metrics.
The business practice of turning to a niche specialist for almost every non-core area of operation is well-established. Similarly, engaging an energy expert in a professional consulting relationship can generate highly beneficial outcomes for the organization. Successful engagements have demonstrated improved cost management, infrastructure reliability, employee comfort and productivity, and organizational reputation.
In the June 2017 issue of Building Operating Management, Klaar de Schepper writes about the challenges of organizing and analyzing energy data in a pair of articles entitled "How to Get the Most Use Out of Energy Data" and "How Focused Data Use Analysis Leads to Energy Efficiency." De Schepper identifies the new tools available to assist in the process: "Among the variable costs involved in operating a facility, utilities—in particular energy and water—may be the largest expense…. Energy analysis, artificial intelligence, and internet integration are among the new tools being used to know what is used, when, and how much it costs."
Later, De Schepper acknowledges the truth that "once some interesting insights have been culled from utility bills, more detailed analysis will be desired." Energy data is collected today in various ways and at different levels of granularity, but organizations that want to maximize the results of their efforts need highly detailed and well-integrated data.
Most organizations don't have internal resources designated to address this level of energy management. Nor do they yet fully understand that energy use across their enterprise impacts their organization in a variety of ways that ultimately affect bottom line performance. But an organization's investment in energy-consuming infrastructure and the recurring expense flowing through the utility meter can be managed to deliver more than bottom-line benefits.
Retaining a professional energy consultant like Sieben Energy Associates can create significant value. Everybody in the organization may experience and enjoy the positive outcomes of a robust energy management program. We have worked with a nationally ranked pediatric healthcare provider to foster a culture of best-in-class energy management. Sieben Energy Associates helps organizations leverage their "energy investment" to become more efficient, more sustainable, and more productive.