Our essential energy saving guide for the retail sector
The retail sector offers many opportunities for an energy manager to easily and quickly save time, energy and money. We asked Stark’s team of expert energy analysts to give their top tips and the best reports that you can start using right now.
Our analysts pointed out that you need to start off with having the right data.
Stark’s Energy Data Analyst Sophie Cook said “We sometimes see stores where things like occupancy information and floor area haven’t been added into Stark ID, our energy analytics platform. It’s really easy to add that info and once you’ve done that, you can really start digging into your data and look for what is often easy to spot opportunities to save energy and cut costs.”
Adding occupancy information for your stores can show you your energy consumption levels when your site is occupied, partially occupied or unoccupied. Most of the time it is very easy to identify stores that show anomalous overnight use and often this waste can be eliminated without any need for capital expenditure.
Sophie recommended using the Stark ID report – ‘Profile – Month by Interval – Occupancy Baseload – Electricity’
“This report will show you your site’s baseload or the minimum electricity consumption that is needed for your site. You can use this report to focus on your unoccupied consumption and compare it against your baseload.
The graphical display in this report means that I can easily see if anything had been left on overnight. It shows me the out of hours consumption patterns over a whole week or month and if I saw a peak in electricity consumption when a site was supposed to be unoccupied, then we can investigate this further.”
Within Stark ID we have a range of League Table reports that can be used to quickly visualise your portfolio’s best and worst performers.
In addition to these reports, Sophie recommended the Stark ID report – ‘Profile – Week by Interval v Previous year – Electricity’
“The League Table reports in Stark ID are invaluable when I want to rank all stores. I can easily rank them by a variety of key energy KPI’s including Floor Area and Occupancy which is great to kick start conversations and help drive at a site.
When I want more granular detail on a specific store, then the ‘Profile – Week by Interval v Previous year – Electricity’ report shows me a great comparison of how that store is performing now and compare it to the same week last year.
The report is versatile and can be used to highlight the successes of initiatives such as installing new equipment like LED lighting and track the positive impact the energy manager has had on lowering consumption with other energy saving initiatives.
Again, being a graphical report, you can see in an instant if your current consumption is lower than the black line representing the previous year. It also includes a summary of your KPIs for that week’s data all in one place. You can use this to easily see information on kWh consumption and potential savings for that week, which can be really useful to highlight to a site on their positive performance for that week.“
Floor area and other metrics
Retail companies can benefit immensely by using floor area, sales figures or average footfall to compare energy performance. Sophie advised “By inputting the size of your site into Stark ID, you can compare your largest stores against your smaller ones. This data can be used to track the efficiency of equipment in a store.
Included in our League Table reports, you can also use the population parameter. This is very useful if floor area data is not available, or if an Energy Manager wanted to compare their stores against a different parameter instead. It’s simple to get started, and Stark ID users can talk to us about what data they need adding into their platform.”
If you don’t have a shut-down procedure for your stores to follow then you are relying on staff to know what can be turned on and off. This can lead to overnight energy waste.
A great way to investigate a high baseload is to organise a night walk. Taking a key stakeholder with you can really shed some light on the situation.
When investigating energy performance across your company, compare stores with similar characteristics. For example, we recommend creating Custom Sets to analyse stores in shopping centres and high streets separately.
A monthly League Table for your stores or regional management can be very effective.
Consider introducing financial benefits or other rewards for your stores that achieve key goals on their energy performance.
Highlight energy waste
Empower your staff with Energy Alerts for their site that highlight energy waste or a change in performance. Make sure you capture regular feedback to continually improve your strategy.
Ensure energy is on the agenda at every board meeting. Give your projects the attention they need to succeed.
Pass through tariff – peak red DUoS
If you have a pass-through tariff, experiment with what you can turn off during the peak red DUoS period. For example, can you cycle your air conditioning without affecting your store’s environment?