Tailored Energy Management: Right-sized Strategic Energy Management
I’m sure you have heard the saying, “One size fits all”. When it comes to managing energy via Strategic Energy Management (SEM), what is a perfect fit for one facility may not be the right solution for another. DNV GL designed a Tailored Energy Management (TEM) to address these differences. Simply, TEM is SEM that is tailored based on the customer needs while still meeting the utility’s goals and objectives.
Although the standard SEM program is a well-known energy saving approach, it is a one-size-fits-all approach that has some key challenges, depending upon the needs of the customer. Figure 1 illustrates some of these challenges, including shortage of facility employee time and commitment, customer engagement, and facility size. These are some of challenges that reduce the effectiveness of SEM for both customers and utilities as discussed in my presentation at the 2018 Industrial Energy Technology Conference (IETC).
Figure 1: Examples of SEM barriers
The presentation describes that SEM is more effective if it is tailored and right-sized to meet the needs of individual facilities. Right-sizing SEM allows the program to offer tailored services such as benchmarking, training, and equipment and process assessment based on the customers’ needs and values while meeting the utility’s goals and objectives. For example, the training needs of a highly energy efficient company are different than for an organization new to continuous improvement. The following factors are key to right-sizing SEM by offering Tailored Energy Management that is truly customer centric;
- Understand customer drivers and motivations
- Be flexible and provide service based on customer schedule
- Streamline the process of the SEM program so it is easy to understand and follow for all levels in the customer’s organization and facility
- Evolve the SEM strategy overtime, to best serve the emerging needs of the customer (i.e. a desire to ultimately achieve ISO 50001 certification)
- Design the level of energy assistant, energy audit, and trainings based on sector, size and complexity of their facility
- Design tiered energy incentives rebates based on the customer’s values and drivers
- Include non-energy benefits when promoting the benefits of energy saving projects
Considering the above factors, DNV GL designed Tailored Energy Management (TEM) as a solution to barriers that arise from traditional SEM programs. Simply, TEM is SEM that is tailored based on the customer needs while still meeting the utility’s goals and objectives. TEM promotes a “deep-dive” approach to create long-term energy strategies and annual dollar savings for end use customers using 5 steps as shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2: DNV GL Tailored Energy Management Approach
TEM makes the process of continual energy improvement more effective for both end users and utilities. It simplifies the energy management process for end users by providing customized services and expert support as the customer maneuvers through the various stages of TEM. As result, utilities can achieve higher energy savings and create long-term customer engagement.