There’s a lot riding on your shoulders.
It’s not that you aren’t worried about your rising energy costs. Each month, that bill creeps higher and higher, and you know your current solution isn’t sustainable.
But between juggling budgets, scheduling maintenance visits, and fielding employee requests, somehow finding ways to save on energy keeps getting pushed to the end of your to-do list. Sound familiar?
Here at GOEFER, we’re all about cutting energy costs, and lucky for you, we’re fanatics about doing the research and coming up with the best solutions possible. That’s why we’ve put together this list of ways that you can trim the utility fat in your own office. Take a look.
One of the fastest ways to cut down on office energy costs is to swap out your lighting. Lighting is responsible for more than 10% of annual energy costs in the commercial sector, but switching to LED bulbs instead of the once-standard incandescent variety can cut that figure dramatically. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, LED bulbs use at least 75%less energy than incandescent lighting and they last 25 times longer.
If that’s not reason enough to switch, LEDs also produce less heat than a standard bulb — an important factor to consider since more than 20% of office energy costs go toward cooling and ventilation.
If your office’s energy bill is steadily climbing, you may need to take a long, hard look at the tools your employees use every day. We analyzed more than 600 electronic devices and found that desktop computers are about 87% less efficient than laptops.
Not surprisingly, computers and other office electronics account for more than 15% of energy use in the commercial sector, making this area a prime opportunity for savings.
In fact, one of our very first customers discovered that they could save about $17,000 each year by replacing their outdated, energy-hogging desktop computers with newer laptops.
If you do decide to replace your employees’ computers — or any other office electronics, for that matter — be sure to purchase ENERGY STAR certified devices. These products are guaranteed to use at least 20% less energy than non-certified devices and can have a huge impact on your electricity bill.
If you don’t already, consider allowing your staff to work remotely from time to time. Even just one extra day per week of keeping the office closed can have a significant impact on your energy bill — with no employees at their desks, you won’t need to power lighting, computers, or personal devices, and you can keep the thermostat set to a slightly less comfortable temperature.
Incidentally, studies have found that employees who telecommute are about 13% more productive than those who do not and are about 50% less likely to quit their jobs.
Not sure which day to cut? Our study found that Wednesdays routinely saw the heaviest load in plugged-in devices. Plus, we think “Work-From-Home Wednesday” has a nice ring to it.
Take a look around your office and count how many printers you have plugged in. Now, think about the last time you printed something.
Did you really have to have a hard copy of it?
Printers are a major source of energy inefficiency for most offices due to a combination of excessive printing and a disproportionate ratio of printers to employees. In fact, we discovered that one of our customers — a large company based in Arizona with a robust stance on energy savings and sustainability — somehow has about 1 printer for every 2 employees.
At that rate, if you manage a 50-person office, you’re paying for electricity to 25 different printers. And we’re betting that none of them see anywhere close to constant use.
Cutting back on the number of printers available to your employees is a great way to start saving on energy (as well as IT support hours). If your office is printing-heavy, try allotting 1 printer to every 10 employees, or even 1 printer to every 15 people.
You can also create new policies limiting what employees are allowed to print. Avoid printing things like meeting agendas, reports, or other documents that can easily be shared and signed electronically, and put the kibosh on any personal printing if you haven’t already done so.
If yours is like most companies, you probably already have a policy in place requiring employees to power down all devices when they leave at the end of the day. Though this is certainly a good step toward cutting energy costs, it’s only a small part of the puzzle … and it’s not as effective as you probably think it is.
Any device left plugged in draws energy, even if it’s powered down completely. This is commonly known as vampire energy, ghost energy, or phantom energy. And though your office probably uses only a very small amount of it each billing cycle, it does add up over time — especially in larger offices with more devices plugged in.
Consider asking your employees to unplug all of their electronics after they power them down. Alternately, you can plug these devices into a power strip and simply have employees switch it off when they leave. It only adds a few seconds to their closing-time routine but can mean significant savings for your company in the long run.
Want a better way to stop the leak of vampire energy through plugged-in devices? GOEFERit! Our advanced smart powerstrip constantly monitors the energy use of every device plugged into it and shares that data with you in real time over your WiFi network. With GOEFER, you’ll be able to know exactly which devices are drawing unused power and disconnect them remotely through the GOEFER mobile app.
Ready to see how GOEFER works at your company? Tell us about your office and we’ll get started.
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