Energy management gives businesses the competitive edge, study finds

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A new study has revealed that the majority of business decision-makers feel that managing electricity costs is essential for gaining a competitive advantage in the market, the Deloitte website reports.

According to the Deloitte Resources 2015 Study, more than three-quarters (79%) of those in charge of energy management viewed lowering energy costs as vital for their organisation creating and maintaining a competitive edge. What's more, a similar number (77%) feel that reducing electricity outgoings is one of the most effective ways to gain a financial advantage over competitors.

The findings indicate that measured energy consumption and reduction has infiltrated the business psyche, as more and more companies view it as being an essential part of their strategies.

For this, its fifth annual Resources study, Deloitte captured the views of more than 600 business decision-makers responsible for energy management at companies with 250 employees or more, across a range of industries.

The businesses surveyed answered questions based on eight capability maturity categories: vision and strategy; goal setting and capital allocation; program measurement and management; demand and operations management; supplier and contract management; cost and risk management; governance and culture; and reporting systems and tools.

According to the findings, companies of all sizes displayed increased maturity levels in nearly every category. The proportion of respondents who said that energy management was a "key element of corporate strategy," and whose staff "have energy objectives incorporated into goals" was up 10% from last year, at 44%.

More businesses now have formal energy reduction goals, too – this number has increased from 46% last year to more than half (57%) in 2015.

In addition to this, companies are feeling more positive about their achievements - more than half (52%) described their energy management as 'extremely' or 'very' successful this year, compared with 42% in 2014.

Perhaps the most significant takeaway was that businesses are investing even more of their budgets in energy management. The large majority (93%) of respondents have invested in EM systems in the past three years, accounting for around 17% of their total capital budgets; that's up from 12% last year.

Marlene Motyka – US Alternative Energy Leader and co-author of the study – explained how these findings are likely to affect the energy management sector going forwards.

She believes that as more companies across various sectors embrace energy management, and invest more money into these systems and technologies, "the platform for related innovation and expansion is largely in place, and the pace of change is likely to accelerate."

Energy management strategy

 

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