Feb 23, 2015

By: Chelsea Haley, DKI Ventures, LLC

Let’s face it, electricity is significant for any office environment. Employees cannot function effectively without light or in extreme climate conditions, and with everything switching to digital, most companies cannot survive without technology. However, without proper monitoring, these costs can add excessively to a big, fat bill at the end of each month. Consider applying these tips to your office environment to reduce your monthly and annual energy bills.

Lighting – Switch Them Out

Want to save 75% of your energy? Compact fluorescent light bulbs are easy to install and affordable, and will help cut your energy costs. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, lighting can consume as much as 50 percent of the average commercial building’s energy bill. So, take the first step and switch to lower-wattage bulbs.

Regulate the Air

Another huge factor to electrical bills is heating and cooling systems. The easiest way to cut these costs is to regulate the temperature using a programmable thermostat. Costs increase the more the systems are turned up or down, since it takes more energy to get to the desired temperature each time. So, agree as a group, at what temperature everyone is comfortable working. For those who run colder, fill a basket in the break room (or mutual meeting area) with blankets.

A couple other things to note with temperature regulation:

  • Check your air-conditioning units regularly for leaks or faulty equipment
  • Ensure windows and doors are well sealed and not leaking out/in air

Enjoy the Outdoors

Studies show increased productivity and creativity with natural landscapes. If your business permits and the weather allows, consider changing your environment and working outside. You can save on energy costs to not utilize the building – not to mention –fresh air is good for you.

Put it to Sleep

Set your computers to go to sleep automatically after a set time of inactivity. Most screen savers keep monitors running at full power, so if you don’t use it, lose it – so to speak.

Shut it Down

Ask the last person to leave the office for the night to walk around and ensure everything has been turned off. Check computers, monitors, printers, lights, etc.

Even better, consider plugging these devices into a power strip, and after everything shuts down, you can simply switch the power strip OFF to ensure you’re not wasting any energy. According to the Department of Energy, electronics plugged in still use 75 percent of electrical use when powered off.