Johann Van Dyke, House Manager, Smart Energy GB
Green business; green employees
Getting a team of employees to take action on energy saving in the workplace can feel like herding cats.
Nonetheless, it’s a time investment worth making – and one that benefits your staff as much as it benefits you.
Keeping business energy use and bills under control, reducing carbon, and building a green brand are more important than ever. With new principles such as ‘corporate social responsibility’ here to stay, it’s important to put practical and visible measures in place for running an environmentally-friendly organisation.
The role of energy managers
I’ve always worked in service and hospitality, but my career spans across several industries, including retail management, flight attending in the US, and a number of front-of-house roles. Keeping working environments comfortable for staff and guests is vital, but so is building a space and a workforce that functions in a truly environmentally friendly way.
I have been responsible for energy management at a number of organisations – introducing green policies and encouraging staff to take them on board, learning from employee feedback on energy systems, and making sure offices and other spaces are at the forefront of environmentally friendly practice.
Reducing energy use is a huge part of being a green business, so it’s great to be House Manager at Smart Energy GB, the voice of the smart meter rollout, where the whole team is as passionate about energy saving as I am.
We encourage our team to think about energy saving as much as possible, but we’ve also built an office that does some of the hard work for them – with energy efficient and motion sensing LED lights, monitors and printers with auto-sleep settings, and laptops that use far less energy than desktop computers. We also encourage our team to work flexibly so they can get smart meters installed in their homes.
Energy managers have a vital role to play when it comes to taking forward environmentally friendly measures in the workplace – and the smart meter rollout is creating opportunities to connect with employees on sustainability issues like never before.
Smart meters and the national rollout
Smart meters are being installed in homes and small businesses across Britain. They send automatic meter readings to your energy supplier, meaning accurate bills and an end to meter readings and estimated bills. They also show you exactly how much energy you’re using and what it’s costing you in pounds and pence.
Smart meters are supporting the development of a smarter, more flexible grid, and the more efficient use of energy at home and in the workplace.
Smart Energy GB, the voice of the smart meter rollout, is encouraging employers to support their staff to get smart meters installed in their homes and make the most of the benefits.
By sharing information about smart meters with your team, you can help employees save on their bills and reduce their carbon footprint. Encouraging employees to save energy at home can also relieve financial pressure, help build a more motivated workforce and inspire people to save energy in the workplace.
A guide for employers
The Carbon Trust and Smart Energy GB, the voice of the smart meter rollout, have teamed up to produce an employers’ guide to smart meters and energy efficiency at home and at work.
The new, free-to-download guide for employers explains how to design and run an energy efficiency awareness campaign in the workplace, including giving practical advice to employees on how they can benefit from getting a smart meter and saving energy at home.
Whether it’s health, fitness, transport or childcare, leading employers recognise the benefits of supporting employees beyond their immediate job role. Receiving help and advice about energy saving at home can give employees the confidence that their employer cares about their well-being.
A campaign on energy saving and effective use of smart meters at home can also sit well within your company’s energy management activities. This is because higher awareness could lead to improved engagement with workplace-based energy saving campaigns.
From guidance on structuring, delivering and evaluating an internal campaign, to shareable fact sheets on smart meters and energy saving in the office, this new guide is an incredibly useful resource.
Smart Energy Employers
To give your business a boost when it comes to green credentials, you can also sign up to be a Smart Energy Employer.
Smart Energy GB is inviting businesses and organisations of all sizes to become Smart Energy Employers by sharing information with staff about smart meters. Those who take part will be awarded a ‘Smart Energy Employers’ badge – a great visual addition to your green brand.
Employers including the NHS, Hilton Hotels and Adnams are already working with staff, helping them to get smart meters as part of the Smart Energy Employers scheme.
At Smart Energy GB, we’ve put lots of measures in place to keep our team engaged with smart meters and their energy use at home and at work.
To get your business started, you can download the free guide for employers and find out more about Smart Energy Employers at: smartenergyGB.org/employers