When you look at your monthly energy bill, you might have little understanding of how your utilities work. You might not know if your current energy rate is competitive or if your consumption lines up with businesses of a similar size. You might not have someone on your team who’s equipped to negotiate prices with your energy providers.
There is a solution. An energy consultant can examine your energy usage and help you find competitive prices and reduce your energy consumption. You might be wondering if an energy consultant is right for you, and what advantages you can gain from working with one. We can answer some of these questions for you.
In general, a consultant fills in a gap in a company’s knowledge and resources. When you bring in consultants, you can expect results because they are experts in the industry, and their only job is to provide you with tailored solutions. An energy consultant does just that, with a focus on your energy needs. The energy consultant’s job is to find ways to reduce your monthly energy bill.
Consultants do this in several ways. First, they look for the best energy providers for your business. They can compare rates and make sure you get the best deal. Next, they look at your current energy consumption. They can find areas where you’re overdrawing on resources. They’ll help you reduce your energy consumption through better practices and energy-efficient technology. They also look for ways to be more environmentally friendly, both through reducing usage and finding green energy suppliers.
A large business or one with complex energy needs can benefit greatly from hiring an energy consultant. You likely have energy coming from a variety of sources, including natural gas, heating oil or bioheat, electricity, and propane. You also use your electricity and fuel for a variety of purposes. All of this can get pretty complicated, but an energy consultant can make managing this process simple.
If you’re considering an energy consulting service for your business, you might wonder what you’ll get out of the partnership. Here are seven reasons to hire an energy efficiency consultant:
As a business owner or operations manager, you likely don’t have a lot of first-hand experience with energy procurement. You may be left wondering if your current energy provider is giving you a good deal. You might not know much about which fees are standard and which are excessive. An energy consultant can dig into these details for you and give you knowledgeable, trustworthy solutions. They can do so because they know the energy industry inside and out.
Also, they have varied experience across many industries. While no two businesses are exactly alike, energy consultants have seen it all. They’ve found things that work in most companies, as well as things that work in similar situations. With their creative problem solving and informed perspective, they can develop a sound strategy that works for your needs.
You can trust energy consultants to be experts in their industry. And, you’ll usually find that they’ve worked with many other businesses in your industry as well. Your consultant can tell you if your energy usage is in line with others in your industry. You’ll discover ways to reduce your energy consumption that you may not have noticed, and prices similar to what others in your industry pay.
If you’re considering bringing in an energy consultant, you might have also considered bringing a service in-house. Or, you might even think about training someone on your staff to handle energy procurement. An energy consultant can give you the benefit of having a full-time energy manager without the cost of recruitment or training. Your team can do what they do best, rather than splitting their focus between energy usage management and other tasks. You’ll get the benefit of a well-established expert who can dedicate the necessary time to finding solutions.
When your utility company makes a mistake, it can cost you more money. An energy consultant audits your utility bills and finds errors, so you never overpay. They can make sure you’re charged a fair rate and spot charges for services you did not order. Your energy consultant will also foster strong relationships with energy vendors. They’ll know who to speak with to resolve an issue with your bill, and the strong partnerships they have with suppliers can aid the process.
The energy industry is always changing. Fuel prices go up and down all the time, and new technology develops that can make your energy consumption more efficient. Estimates indicate that over one-third of the energy in American commercial buildings is wasted. Anything from inefficient air conditioners to light bulbs can be costing your company. Energy consultants can help reduce these costs.
Energy-efficient technology is also fraught with trends that might not always provide you with the value you deserve. An energy consultant can help you navigate changing energy prices and new technologies so you can get a good deal and save on fuel or electricity.
There are many different energy suppliers out there. With so many vendors, it can be challenging to request quotes from each one and compare rates. There are also various energy sources, including natural gas, oil, propane, and electricity. To run your business, you may need a combination of these energy sources. Working with an energy consultant simplifies the process of working with many suppliers. You can procure energy from many vendors while working with one point of contact to handle all of them.
This streamlined process lets you pick suppliers based on price without managing a complicated network of sources. You can also opt for green energy solutions for your business. Whether you want 100% renewable energy or cleaner-burning fuel, you’ll find the right supplier for you.
Working with an energy consultant can help you take advantage of a demand response program. These programs reward companies for limiting their energy usage when demand for energy increases. They go into effect in cases of extreme weather and emergencies. If you take part in a demand response program, your company will get paid monthly, whether an event occurs or not. This system can be an excellent way for businesses to save money on their energy bills.
There are many programs out there, and a few ways for your business to qualify. An energy consultant can review your options and help you decide if a cost-saving demand response program is right for you.
If you’ve decided you need an energy consultant, the next step is figuring out who to work with. Fortunately, there are three basic things to look out for when choosing an energy consultant:
Shipley Energy is an energy services company committed to providing custom, innovative solutions. Through EnergyObjective, we offer strategic procurement and utility management for your business. With more than 90 years of energy service under our belts, we’re proud to help companies find the most competitive rates and the best utility management strategy for their needs.
Contact us to discuss your energy usage and learn how we can help you develop your commercial energy procurement strategy.