Energy efficiency is now firmly on the corporate agenda. This is mainly due to energy prices rising dramatically in recent years. But, rightfully, many businesses are also seeking to reduce their energy use for environmental reasons. With energy efficiency now a bigger priority for businesses than ever before, more and more of them are investing in energy management software to help them be as efficient as possible.
Energy management software benefits cover more than just cost reduction. Some of the other benefits of energy management software include greater insight, time-savings and storage benefits. In this post, we’re going to dive into all of the main benefits of energy management software for businesses.
Energy management software essentially provides energy managers with useful information about their consumption patterns by taking in data, analysing it and then providing valuable insights.
If you’re familiar with Google Analytics, think of energy management software like Google Analytics for your energy data.
The 6 Top Benefits of Energy Management Software
- A more streamlined workflow
- Deeper insight into your energy data
- Less time spent on repetitive tasks
- Simplifies stakeholder management
- Reduce energy costs
- Secure storage of your utility data
1. A more streamlined workflow
As an energy manager, you're likely responsible for more than just electricity use. You're probably also responsible for gas and water use, maybe even generation if you produce energy onsite.
Your energy supplier may have provided you with software to see your energy usage over time. However, it's unlikely that that one supplier is serving all of your utility needs. Therefore, you won't be able to see all your data in one system. This is especially common in multi-site organisations where different suppliers serve sites in different parts of the country.
This means to do any analysis, you'll need to download data from several different systems, before uploading it into a tool like Excel.
Energy management software alleviates this problem. Good software isn't limited to a single supplier. Which means you can analyse all of your electricity, gas, water and generation data in one place, quickly and easily. Higher-quality solutions may even come with weather data built-in, eliminating the need to download and input weather data manually.
2. Get a deeper insight into your energy data
Many of the solutions provided by energy suppliers simply visualise your use. After all, it's not necessarily in their best interest that you reduce your usage. That could mean less money for them.
With only visualisations, it's unlikely that you'll be able to identify all of the energy-saving opportunities across your organisation. The likelihood is that you'll only notice severe issues and smaller savings opportunities will go unnoticed. This is disappointing because when added up, these more modest savings can save thousands or even millions of pounds a year.
Data is the bread and butter of energy management software companies. At Surple, we don't sell energy as a commodity or carry out consultancy work. Our sole focus is on providing software that delivers the most valuable insights to our users. We utilise machine learning technology to highlight areas for improvement, giving you a deeper understanding of your energy use. This is functionality you just can't get with Excel or many supplier-owned tools.
3. Spend less time on repetitive tasks
Whether it's sending monthly reports to your company's CFO, or checking for anomalies first thing in the morning, you probably feel like you're doing the same tasks over and over again. Even worse, it probably feels like most of your week is spent on this type of work.
You're probably not spending as much time as you'd like planning cool energy-saving projects, which is a shame because that's probably why you wanted to be an energy manager in the first place.
Energy management software is all about making life as an energy manager easier. At Surple, we've worked closely with real energy professionals, across all sorts of sectors, to identify tedious tasks that we can automate for them.
Our software allows you to run degree day regressions at the click of a button and schedule reports to be sent out across your whole organisation. You can rest easy in the knowledge that our automatic anomaly detection service will notify you via email if anything has gone wrong. If you don't hear anything, you can safely assume, everything is operating as expected.
All of this automation will save you a big chunk of your week, allowing you to finally start working on those energy-saving projects that have been in your diary for ages.
4. It simplifies stakeholder management
There was a time where businesses handed energy management responsibility to the COO or CFO. Nowadays, with more companies understanding the importance of energy efficiency, the responsibility typically sits with a dedicated energy management team. Even if you're the only energy manager in your organisation, you probably still have to talk to the CFO and various facilities managers, right?
Have you ever needed to email data files or screenshots to your colleagues to discuss an energy-related issue? This is painful. There's a better way.
We understand that energy is a team game. That's why we think that energy management software should make it easier to communicate and collaborate on energy-related issues. In Surple you can share information with your team, including alarms, anomalies, reports and unique datasets. You can even use our in-built messaging functionality to work through issues with your team (think Facebook messenger meets energy).
This means essential energy conversations don't get lost in a sea of emails. It also means that there's one dedicated place for people in your organisation to see, analyse and discuss energy data.
5. Reduce your energy costs
Yes, energy management software itself typically has a cost associated with it. But, if you use it responsibly and the software is good enough, you can quickly reduce your energy costs. Before you know it, the software will be paying for itself.
One of the best ways to keep on top of your energy costs using energy management software is to set a batch of relevant alarms on your usage. Another is to act quickly on any anomalies that occur to stop energy waste.
Research suggests, most companies can easily save up to 10% on their energy bills by using energy management software. As an example, in just a small project with Newport City Council, our software helped identify savings of £30,000 a year.
The team at Surple have been great to work with, and their simple software solution is something that would improve any organisation’s strategy towards energy efficiency.Ross Cudlipp
Newport City Council
Remember, as well as the energy-savings, you'll also be saving hundreds of hours with good software. Therefore, you'll be able to run and manage more energy-savings projects that can result in even more savings for your organisation. Savings that wouldn't have been achievable without the right tool.
Further reading: Ultimate Guide to Business Energy Management »
6. Secure storage of your utility data
It's become standard for businesses to switch energy supplier regularly in the constant pursuit of the best energy deal. However, when you switch energy suppliers, you typically also lose access to your historical energy data. This is disappointing because that data is valuable for analysis, especially when analysing the success of energy projects with a long ROI. As a result, some businesses don't switch energy supplier, even when there's a better deal elsewhere.
As a responsible energy management software provider, we host all of your energy data securely in the cloud, at no additional cost. If you're a Surple customer, you can switch supplier as often as you like and you'll still have access to all of your historical data.
Hopefully, this article has helped you to understand the benefits of energy management software for your business.
At Surple, we are specialists when it comes to developing energy management software. That's why we've built the only machine learning-powered solution that can take in all your data and uncover real savings. We work in partnership with our customers to make the best software on the market. Don't just take our word for it! Check out what Joel Kirby, the energy manager at the Celtic Manor Resort had to say about Surple helping him out during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Surple is one of the most affordable solutions on the market. As a bonus, we give our customers the luxury of a monthly rolling contract, so if it isn't working, then you can leave. No awkward tie-ins, no hidden clauses, we just want to provide the best software possible and if you think it isn't, then you're free to leave.
If you're ready to take your energy management game to the next level, book in for a demo using the link below.