Automatic Vs. Manual energy data collection


 Why should I have an Energy Management software when I can manually gather the energy consumption data from the facilities’ meters and enter them on my own Excel spreadsheet? I will be doing the same as all those software companies in the market except I wouldn’t have to pay for it.

Energy Management Software is not just for my projects, it is expensive, and it wouldn’t really add a lot of value to my work.

If you can somewhat relate to the previous statements, this is just the article for you. There are ways to carry out energy management within facilities without an Energy Management software, that is for sure. In fact, there are still many large and respected companies out there basing their energy decisions on energy data collection manually.

This post won’t back you up on your current ‘software-free’ perceptions though, on the contrary, it will open your eyes to a new reality and all the benefits you are missing out on.

What you’ll find in this well crafted yet crucial series of articles, are all the reasons why you shouldn’t continue with manual energy data collection.

Since the list of reasons that support the use of an EMS is quite long we have divided this post in 3 parts. In this first part we’ll cover 2 factors that will show you how your outdated energy data collection system is making you waste time and money.


1. Time and productivity: Two precious treasures

Time (energy data collection)Whenever you or a designated worker visit the control room to get the energy readings from meters, there is time and effort employed.

The manual typing of this collected data onto a spreadsheet  takes time and is a strenuous and monotonous process which anyone would want to avoid.

The truth is, all this time employed in the recollection and documentation of energy consumption represents a cost for the company.

Whether cheap or expensive, it implies a high opportunity cost for the firm since it is time that can be employed doing things that add more value to the operations of the company.

Aside from the higher value that workers could be adding to the company, they could be using this time doing more fulfilling tasks.

On the other hand, with an energy monitoring solution you have all the information you need in your screen, just a click away.

No more going every day or every week to collect these long numbers at control rooms, and better yet, no more spending hours typing them in your excel.

Go straight to analyzing your data with all the information being broken down into as many categories as you like.

All this being said an automatic energy data collection system is an investment that will pay off in many ways.

There is obviously a higher cost associated to it than manually gathering the energy data but you are getting so much more for it. You will be getting a higher productivity of your workers, due to saved time and better work conditions.


2. Accuracy makes all the difference 

Accuracy (energy data collection)

Assuming you haven’t made any mistake at the moment of manually gathering the readings from the energy meters, there is a high chance you will eventually make a mistake when typing them in your spreadsheet.

When you are typing numbers that don’t represent anything in themselves in a spreadsheet filled with more numbers there is a high probability you type in a wrong number by mistake.

That is just the nature of us human beings, we are bound to human error.

Any mistake when typing in energy data will derive in misleading information that will just waste your time by making all the work done useless.

Aside from this very frustrating point, having misleading information won’t let you make the right energy efficiency decisions, resulting in a waste of savings opportunities.

With an energy management software you rule out the possibility of human error in data collection and visualization. When taking energy efficiency decisions, you will be sure you are making them based on accurate and reliable information.

The savings you are planning to achieve won’t be exposed to miscalculations and therefore closer to become a reality.

If these first two reasons aren’t enough to highlight the convenience of moving from a manual to an automatic energy data collection system, check out the second part.

In the second part of this series we’ll cover three more reasons why the answer to your energy efficiency projects is an Energy Management Software. These factors are related to the additional benefits that an energy management solution provides besides automatic data collection.

Go to the second part or try DEXMA’s Energy Management Software free demo here.


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