Procurement · 25 January 2016

How the business community could save hundreds of millions of pounds when it comes to energy costs

Even small changes can bring about big savings
Even small changes can bring about big savings
Chancellor George Osborne’s 2015 announcementsmay not have offered small businesses much in the way of help with energy costs, but there are still certain ways that bosses can ensure savings are made.

It was revealed in March 2015 that The Chase Golf Club in Staffordshire had decided to try and reduce its energycosts. At the time, owner Chris Simmons claimed that many SMEs simply shrug energy off as a necessary cost.

But he explained: “Having more control over the amount of energy you use and the effect on the bottom line is a great comfort when running a complex business.

His remarks were backed up by npower’s Business Energy Index, which noted that 53 per cent of SMEs in the UK had no methods in place to manage efficiency and energy costs in 2016.

Patrick Harvey, head of customer loyalty at npower, claimed that for SMEs, the greatest driver for increasing energy efficiency is cost, rather than the environment.

this is why it is surprising that so many employers are still not measuring the positive impact that implementing energy efficiency measures can have on their business, he said. “The results of the research show the huge untapped potential for SMEs to both reduce emissions and increase savings.”

Furthermore, a joint research project by the Energy Efficiency Financing (EEF) scheme and Carbon Trust, found that British businesses were wasting 414m a year on energycosts.

The findings, based on data which looked ateach sector’s use oflighting, heating, hot water, coolingandventilation, concludedthat UK SMEs were overspending on energy bills by 82m a year.

This, it suggested, was in part due to out-dated systems and inefficient equipment.



Marcelino Castrillo is MD of business banking at RBS in September 2015. ? Prior to to that, Castrillo was MD of SME banking at Santander, where he was responsible for leading the challenge of scaling Santander's business bank and managed the business through a period of significant change.