Energy Management

How to Communicate the Importance of Energy Data to Management & Get Buy-In

2 min read

There’s no question that businesses can more easily manage their energy costs by aggregating and analyzing energy data. But, communicating the importance of energy data management to key management remains a challenge for many energy managers. So I was happy to have the opportunity to answer the question, “How can we translate the importance of energy data to top management and get buy-in from stakeholders” that was asked during the webinar that we recently presented with Environmental Leader. (With more than 600 people registering, it is clear that Strategic Energy Procurement and Energy Data are hot topics for business energy decision makers.)

First, I would recommend you work with a reliable outside company that has the tools to translate all the data that you’re tracking into what I call a CFO dashboard. A CFO dashboard translates energy consumption and costs into metrics important to your business. So, if you’re in the hospitality business, for example, a CFO dashboard would integrate kilowatt hours (kWh) into hospitality metrics like number of beds or number of room keys. Property owners and managers might look at square footage or number of units. Basically, the CFO dashboard helps you display energy related data in terms and metrics that your management is already seeing.

If we take a closer look at the hospitality example I just mentioned, you may think about showing metrics like ‘kWh per bed’ or ‘kWh per room key’ and the electricity spend per bed or room key. This information can help you show your CFO the direct relationship between energy cost and key business metrics like profit margin and unit pricing.

By showing how energy cost fits into your business’ overall operating expenses in your industry standard terms and metrics, your CFO can more easily understand the specific value of active energy management and strategic energy procurement. Once you are able to change the perception of ‘energy cost’ from a budget line-item to a strategic asset, you can more effectively discuss how energy efficiency measures or load response programs can contribute directly to achieving a cost per unit goal. And, as a result of discussing energy in this context, your management may allow you more flexibility to pursue strategic procurement options that can take advantage of market price movement in order to lower total energy costs over time.

In conjunction with the webinar, I authored a whitepaper on strategic energy procurement and energy data for businesses. Click here to download the whitepaper.

If you have any questions, please leave me a comment and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. Stay tuned for more strategic energy management Q&A’s and tips from last week’s webinar. There are more to come!

You may also be interested in these related articles: