When it comes to cost cutting, electricity is not the first thing that springs to the minds of most business owners. But energy costs are a potential source of huge long-term savings, improving your company’s bottom line.
Since October is National Energy Action Month (also National Cyber Security Awareness Month), we thought we would share some ideas regarding energy efficiency and provide you with a list of ways to cut your company’s energy consumption.
The Case For Energy Efficiency
Even business owners that don’t consider themselves “green” should be paying attention to energy-cutting measures because the potential savings can be substantial.
Here are a couple examples:
- Brinker International, the parent company of restaurant chains Chili’s and Maggiano’s Little Italy, announced in 2010 that it was replacing inefficient light bulbs with energy-saving ones in 827 locations, reportedly saving them $3.7 million a year.
- Wal-Mart recently announced that it could save as much as $150 million in the 2013 fiscal year as a result of their sustainability programs. As part of that, the retail giant is now the country’s corporate leader in solar installations, and the company plans to have installations at 1,000 of its 4,522 stores by 2020.
While these companies are happy that they can promote their “green” actions, they are even more pleased with how they improve their profitability.
A sub headline of a 2011 L.A. Times article says it all:
“Public goodwill is nice, but Wal-Mart officials say their environmentally friendly moves are motivated by the bottom line.”
Brinker, Wal-Mart, and other companies that are “going green” see value in being energy efficient.
Ways Your Business Can Save Electricity
To provide a starting point, here is a list of things your business can do to save electricity and money.
- Negotiate a better rate with your utility if possible.
- Take advantage of a programmable thermostat. The office doesn’t need to be a comfortable temperature when aren’t there.
- Purchase energy-efficient electronics with the Energy Star logo.
- Create a Green Team that can look for ways your business can save energy and money. The team can also be responsible for implementing new procedures like making sure all of the lights are turned off when you leave the business for the day.
- Turn off the copier and unplug it each day. The same goes for all computers.
- Set all computers to lock after a few minutes of inactivity. Also, program computer monitors to go dark when not in use (screen savers can actually use more electricity). Plus, automatic locking will also help with business security.
- Replace traditional incandescent light bulbs with energy efficient CFLs or LEDs. LEDs use 78 percent less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs.
Investing in new technology upfront and changing a few habits can lead to big savings for your company down the road. Just do the math.
Want to learn more about growing your business? Download a free copy of Building and Exiting a Desirable Business today.