Human factor in finding energy waste
Even with all proper means – energy auditors and meters, investments and reports – a company may miss the most simple opportunities to cut energy costs if one small step is not made.
When a company decides to cut energy costs, an obvious first step is to figure out the current situation: how much energy is used, which equipment uses it, when is energy used. Who should be put in charge of such project? Commonly this task is assigned to a person currently dealing with energy the most – maintenance or operations manager.
And here company risks severely hindering the whole idea of reducing energy cost. What if the person in charge of energy cost will finds massive waste caused by their oversight or mistakes? What if for years and energy was wasted and errors in bills were overlooked? What if energy cost reduction opportunities were right on the surface?
And, finally, what are the chances that person in charge of energy cost will have enough guts to own prior energy waste?
Since nobody likes to be linked to creating waste, this is a big risk. And a big opportunity.
Human solution to energy efficiency
No amount of investment into measuring energy usage or energy audit will fully mitigate this risk. If old errors are not corrected, they will keep causing waste. The higher the prior waste and associated blame – the higher will the resistance to establishing the true causes of waste.
This is not a technical problem, it cannot be solved with technology. This a ‘human’ situation, it calls for a managerial solution. To ensure the highest possible energy cost reduction at the lowest investment, company management should declare amnesty to prior actions related to energy use and cost. Complete, unconditional amnesty.
Amnesty to prior energy waste unlocks immense energy cost reduction potential.
Amnesty will create the most important in-house currency – trust between top management and employees.
Company may go even farther and reward any uncovered prior energy waste. This will mobilize employees towards energy cost reduction goals and, therefore, secure the highest profits.