Small business owners often face increasing business costs associated with expenses like rent and electricity. You’ve probably heard the media focusing on the increasing cost of electricity, but have you thought about what this could mean for your small business?
According to news.com.au, small businesses are being hit with price hikes of up to 120%, compared to households whose electricity prices are increasing by 20%. As a result, it can be necessary to implement some energy saving actions that could reduce your bills and help the environment in the process.
Here are our top 5 tips to help your small business save energy:
1. Turn off the lights
When leaving a room, it’s often easy to forget to turn off the lights. Unnecessarily leaving the lights on when you don’t need them can result in large amounts of wasted energy. Lights aren’t the only thing to keep in mind – other culprits include computers and other electrical appliances. Before you leave for the day, doing a walk-through of the premises can be a great idea. This will help to make sure that unnecessary lights and appliances are turned off. Better yet, opening the blinds and windows to let in the daylight can mean that you don’t have to turn the lights on at all.
2. Use energy efficient lights and laptops
If you do need that extra light, it can be beneficial to use fluorescent or LED light bulbs. Fluorescent and LED lights save more energy than incandescent globes. They can therefore help your small business save energy and reduce your energy bills in the process. Additionally, laptops use less energy than desktop computers. By using laptops, instead of desktops, you could save energy for your small business. Embracing solar power with Logitech Solar Powered Keyboards is another great way to save energy. They work for up to three months in darkness, so you won’t need to worry about using them in an office or indoors.
3. Climate control
Whether you’re at your workplace in the heat of summer, or the winter cold, it’s likely that you use the heating or air conditioning to increase the comfort in your workplace. Whilst this can make working more pleasant, it also uses excessive amounts of energy, and can surge your energy bill. A great way to mitigate this is by keeping the heating and A/C temperatures constant. Recommended temperatures are around 18-20°C in summer, and 24-26°C in winter. When you do have the heating or air conditioning running, close the doors and windows. This way the climate control will be more effective and energy-efficient.
4. Make an investment
Investing in large, energy-efficient equipment might set you back a few more dollars in the short term. Nonetheless, in the long run it can help both the environment and your business.
If it’s time to replace some of your equipment or electrical appliances, be sure to check the Energy Rating labels on new purchases. This is a great way to achieve your energy saving goals. Energy Star models of computers, fax machines and copy machines are a great place to start. These models power down after a period of inactivity. This can save you from having to constantly remember to turn them off. Moreover, inkjet printers consume 90% less energy than laser printers, so can be a great investment for your small business. Another investment you could make is to install blinds or solar screens. They help cool your workplace in the heat of summer, which will help you avoid having to use the air conditioning.
5. Get the team involved
Energy efficiency may not be top of mind for most of your employees – especially the ones who don’t actually deal with paying the energy bill. By starting the conversation about saving energy, you can encourage staff to get on board. Make goals that you and your employees can work towards, like remembering to switch all the lights off 5 days in a row. A good way to do this is by establishing a ‘switch off’ campaign. This can encourage employees to turn off the lights and equipment when they’re not in use. Additionally, putting sticky notes near light switches and appliances can help keep energy efficiency at the forefront of everyone’s minds. You could even implement a rewards program for employees who promote energy efficiency and actively help your small business save energy.
These are only a few recommendations to help your small business save energy. With rising energy prices affecting small businesses, implementing energy saving actions could help you lower your business’s energy consumption and associated costs.