Energy budget setting is not easy when the cost of electricity and gas is an ever-changing picture. To help make your energy budget setting a more accurate and simple process, here are a few tips.
1. Maximise the accuracy of your historical data
Inevitably, a large part of estimating for the future involves looking back at what has happened in the past; identifying changes and trends. To make sure your historical data is as accurate as possible, you need to ensure your information is based on real data rather than estimations and that it doesn’t contain significant errors.
- For all sites with half-hourly (HH) data – is the data complete? If not, request or download the missing information or take manual meter reads to substitute for missing data.
- Request meter reads from all sites that don’t have automated meter readings.
- Chase all outstanding billing queries for the current year; try and ensure all queries are resolved before the end of your current financial year.
- If you’re not on a fixed price contract, review the changes in price that you have experienced across all your sites in the past year.
2. Know your estate
There are many factors that can influence energy use levels across an estate in a year. If you are not aware of the plans for site closures, acquisitions, refurbishments or changes of use, then the energy consumed may come as an unwelcome surprise.
Here’s what you can do:
- Keep in touch with those who prepare programmes of work for facility upgrades and refurbishments, including IT renewals and those in charge of maintenance teams.
- Ensure you are familiar with high-level strategic plans that set longer term shifts in your organisation’s structure and which may affect building use and property responsibilities.
3. Stay ahead of any changes that will affect your bills
Legislative changes, supply issues or contract renewals are all possible elements that may make your bills rise or fall this year. In 2019, the major change to most organisations’ bills we are already aware of are the increases in the Climate Change Levy. These increases will come into effect on 1 April.
The CCL rates for electricity and gas are rising by 45% and 67% respectively this year, which will inevitably impact on the overall cost of energy for any organisation. While the increase on the overall bill will be modest, the Climate Change Levy is charged per kWh and therefore every increase in energy use is impacted accordingly. Reasonably small decreases in energy consumption would offset this increase, but only a planned and monitored energy saving strategy can ensure that this is implemented and maintained.
You can stay up to date with energy pricing by reading our weekly wholesale news posts. If you need guidance around setting your energy budgets or implementing an energy saving strategy, contact us today.