Step 4: Evaluate and keep moving
Effective reporting proves your plan’s value
Track the impact of your energy management improvements with regular reports to show they make a difference. At the very least, include:
- how much energy is used each week or month
- how you’re performing against your targets
- any variances, and why they might have occurred.
When staff make changes that impact results – give them credit. Make the report a measure of their performance rather than yours.
What great reporting looks like
Give your results more impact by tailoring them to suit the people you want to take notice.
- Share them with the right people. Only people with significant control or accountability for energy usage generally need them.
- Check how those people want to see results. For example accountants may want precise numbers in a monthly spreadsheet, while production managers may want to see trends in a weekly graph.
- Compare apples with apples. For example, if some areas have specific reasons for higher energy use, report on changes rather than total use.
- Fold results into other regular reports. They become ‘business as usual’ when they’re integrated with a production, management or board report.
Get creative to give results more punch. For example, show cost savings as the equivalent number of additional staff, or carbon savings as the number of trees planted.
Review progress yearly and share your results
Carry out an in-depth review of your energy management strategy, objectives and action plan at least once a year. Share results with your whole organisation. This will help you:
- get insight into new technologies, practices or programmes to try
- avoid repeating failures
- assess the usefulness of tracking systems and other tools and processes
- promote staff contribution and engagement
- gather success stories to share with stakeholders.
Key steps in an annual review
Gather end of year dataUse your regular reports to quantify gains made over the year. Get feedback from staff directly involved and from other departments. Carry out a survey to assess changes in staff awareness of energy issues.
Identify critical factorsTry to analyse what contributed to hitting or missing targets.
Quantify side benefitsIdentify other benefits gained from your energy management plan such as employee comfort, productivity improvement, increased sales, reduced operation and maintenance costs, or better public relations.
Celebrate success to motivate staff and impress customers
If you’ve met your targets and reduced your climate-changing emissions – shout about it. Recognise staff who got you there and tell customers and stakeholders how awesome you are.
Shout it from the rooftops
New Zealanders want businesses to reduce their carbon footprint. Show customers and stakeholders you’re leading the way – it’s good for your brand and competitive advantage.
- Share your journey. Participate in membership associations and industry bodies to show sector leadership.
- Achieve certifications. Meet a standard such as ISO 50001 or Toitū Envirocare’s carbon certifications and jointly communicate results.
- Enter awards. Going for an external, credible award can generate goodwill with customers and support the case for further improvement.