To help promote a decrease in wasted energy and stem the tide of climate change, many states and municipalities have taken it upon themselves to draw up mandates for energy efficiency in the absence of a national strategy.
These energy efficiency mandates and their ambitious goals are impacting businesses of all sizes, both in positive and negative ways, as those businesses work to comply with the mandates.
Here are 6 ways state energy efficiency mandates are impacting businesses:
Increasing Up-Front Costs
Making a building and a business more energy-efficient requires a lot of time and monetary investment.
From completing an energy audit to see where the business stands to completing necessary changes to decrease energy use, the cost can be overwhelming for some smaller businesses.
However, in most cases, not all the money needs to be paid up front, and not all the energy efficiency changes need to be done at once. This allows business owners to spread out the cost of making their company more energy efficient, cushioning the blow a little bit and helping decrease the financial burden.
Opening up New Funding Sources & Partnerships
To help companies make the necessary energy upgrades, the federal government, local utility companies, and other organizations have made grants and loans available.
These opportunities not only open new funding sources to potentially cash-strapped businesses, they also can help business leaders form new partnerships they may not have otherwise explored.
If, for example, a small business receives a grant from a local utility company, that could be an opportunity for the heads of those two entities to build a friendship. That friendship can be mutually beneficial, providing additional connections in the business community for both parties.
Decreasing Long-Term Costs
Energy costs make up a large portion of many small business’s budgets, with the National Federation of Independent Businesses estimating energy costs as one of the top three most expensive things for companies.
Adding in outdated, inefficient equipment that burns energy only increases those costs.
While it may be expensive initially to replace old equipment to make things more energy-efficient, the long-term costs of maintenance and operation end up saving a business money. These savings can then be re-invested in making the business even more energy-efficient, or put toward other projects that can help operations thrive.
Making a business energy-efficient is a choice, and it’s one that must be made by leaders and individual employees from the top all the way to the bottom.
From electing to complete an energy audit to deciding which projects to prioritize, working toward energy efficiency requires strategic thinking and intentional decision-making. If leaders tasked with making a business more eco-friendly don’t make careful decisions, they could end up doing more harm than good and costing the company more money than is necessary.
Having to sit down and think about the items that will make a business more energy efficient causes everyone to think more carefully about their behaviors, focusing the daily busy-work into something more intentional and strategic.
Promoting Inter-Office Cooperation
An energy-efficient office requires buy-in from people at all levels of the company. It isn’t going to do the company’s goals any good if efforts are undermined by employees who resent being told to change their ways.
Instead, as a company develops an energy-efficiency roadmap and begins executing on the plan, getting the input from employees up and down the org chart can improve overall adoption of the goals and plans.
Having this support makes individual departments and employees accountable for their own performance, and helps everyone feel as if they’re part of working toward a common goal.
Boost Company Marketing Abilities
Many workers and customers want to find companies with a strong environmental protection stance, with some seeking to work only with those as committed to energy efficiency as they are personally.
By undertaking energy efficiency efforts, your company now has a built-in marketing tool when recruiting new workers or looking for new customers.
Being able to tout all the efficient lighting, or the high-efficiency HVAC system, publicly can draw positive attention and help you find employees and customers who will be enthusiastic partners in your business’s growth.
Energy Auditing Software for Conscious Businesses
A thorough, data-driven energy audit is the first step toward getting your business on the right track when it comes to meeting state energy mandates. At EMAT, we make it easier to get that audit completed with less time spent and less hassle, getting you toward the planning stage that much faster. With EMAT Field Auditor, you can save time, money, and frustration over a traditional energy audit, collecting data in the field using your mobile device. Schedule your demo today!