Just when you thought you had energy management at your facility controlled by manually gathering energy data: We bring you a game changer. A solution that will revolutionise your traditional energy management practices.
This is the second part of a series of posts consisting of three parts. In the first part we went through two of the most important factors that make an automatic energy data collection system better than a manual one: productivity and accuracy.
Although important, these two elements are just the mere consequence of the automation of a process.
This second part is more specific and covers three features of an energy management software which make a manual system look obsolete.
This is what an energy manager using a manual energy data collection systems would probably say:
“Energy management is pretty easy, there’s no need to complicate it. I just need to send someone to gather the readings at the meters every day at the beginning and end of the day. I then submit this data onto my Excel spreadsheet which I have already set up with macros and formulas. With this and energy bills I get a fair amount of information to take decisions and control energy costs”.
Now, let’s look at this statement in a critical way with these three elements:
1. Data collection frequency: your window to success
Unless you have someone going every 15 minutes to get the readings from the meters in your manual system, you are leaving out valuable information from your records.
Regardless of how often you do the energy data gathering, several times a day , daily or weekly, you won’t have the full visibility you get when you receive quarter hourly data.
When you have access to data in such detail, you can notice irregularities faster and take proactive decisions instead of reacting after a bigger damage is already done.
If you rely on your monthly energy bill to take decisions, chances are you won’t be able to take timely actions. Energy bills contain a lot of information but it’s just not enough or in real time.
This is evident whenever you apply efficiency measures to reduce your energy costs and you have to wait for several months to pass by to get a clear picture of the obtained results.
With an Energy Management Software you will be able to access all the data you need in real time, whenever you need it. Starting from a quarter hourly frequency, you’ll be able to access data in easy to understand graphs and tables comfortably at your office. You can get the cost of your energy usage based on TOU (time of use) tariff rates and much more.
Moreover, you are able to notice if the efficiency measures you have applied are likely to result in savings or not and, if not, fix anything that could be ruining them, on time, before it is too late.
2. The perks of having alerts
Taking into account that in a manual system you can only know if your energy efficiency measures work out after some months have passed, there is no way you can detect inefficiencies on time.
Here is where the Alerts come in handy. When you can’t be on top of the applied measures all the time, you can configure alerts to notify you if there is a malfunctioning in your systems so that you can take immediate action.
You can get emails and/or sms as soon as something goes wrong so you can fix it as soon as possible.
3. Scalability is the key to growth
If you are manually collecting energy data, it must be for a reason.
It probably is because your projects are quite small or you just have one or a few facilities to manage. This rudimentary data collection system will deliver many of the things you need for your small projects but that will be it.
If the number of facilities you manage increases or your projects grow, you won’t be able to face them accordingly to their requirements.
With this type of system you won’t be able to achieve the scalability you get with a software solution.
Software solutions are able to accommodate growth by being able to handle a growing amount of work and data. You won’t see the expansion of your projects in an increase of your work, the software will do all the adaptation for you.
Whether you have just a few energy efficiency projects or you are getting more and more each time and need a less rudimentary system, there are different types of accounts for you when you get an energy management software. Starting with accounts that include limited features with a lower associated price to more complete ones. (Learn about prices here)
Continue onto the third and last part of this series of posts to discover more features that will make your life easier in your energy efficiency efforts. Besides taking away some of the hard work from your energy management tasks, an energy management software will help you excel at your job and get better results.