Jake Hiller | October 15, 2013
There was such great interest in the webinar “Getting to the Bottom Line of Energy Efficiency Investments,” that we are sharing a follow-up series of Q & A with Jake Hiller, Project Development Analyst for Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). This third post focuses on how EDF Climate Corps participants have leveraged energy data to encourage organizational learning and facilitate reporting and storytelling. You can also read Part 1 and Part 2 of our extended interview, too.
Q: You’ve affirmed that a centralized reporting system or “energy scorecard” is a way to make energy efficiency wins visible. Can you talk about who the audience is for these and how they fit into the “results and stories” piece of the Virtuous Cycle of Strategic Energy Management?
A: We have found that leading organizations go beyond using scorecards for just comparing KPIs and energy data itself. They actually use scorecards to:
Inspire accountability and intra-organizational competition. Putting facility managers on a common ‘grading scale’ for assessing building performance both improves accountability and inspires informal and formal competition to improve.
Some organizations, such as Cisco, have even gone so far as to set up energy use tracking systems among individual employees. In 2009, Sarah Shapiro, Cisco’s EDF Climate Corps fellow, blogged about her experience using Power Distribution Units to compare employee energy use and motivate energy savings. “There's no better incentive than seeing a coworker save more energy than you to get your competitive juices flowing. Individuals – when provided enough information – can find personal motivation to save energy.”
Encourage organizational learning through the sharing of best practices. Organizations can “score” themselves on the presence of leading practices for energy management – such as having a dedicated energy manager or a revolving fund to finance energy efficiency projects. EDF Climate Corps has developed its On-Boarding Tool to help organizations map their practices to the virtuous cycle, and some of our hosts have begun to track progress internally using this tool.
Validate and communicate progress to executives. Energy scorecards function as a simple and clear engagement tool for executives who want a summarized view of performance across the organization. These tools and summaries ensure that resources and efforts are working to meet organization-wide performance improvement goals.
Pave the way for external reporting and benchmarking. Building owners who start benchmarking and reporting energy consumption now will have a much easier time when they have to start reporting that information to the public. Energy scorecards can prepare organizations to participate in the growing trend to externally report and benchmark their building performance through standards such as the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager.
Energy scorecards are an important arrow in the quiver of energy intelligence tools you can leverage as part of your real-time energy data monitoring and analysis. To learn more about the energy efficiency lifecycle referenced above and the power of data-driven energy efficiency, watch EnerNOC's tutorial by EE expert, David Meyers, by clicking the link below.
About EDF Climate Corps
EDF Climate Corps (edfclimatecorps.org) taps the talents of tomorrow’s leaders to save energy, money and the environment by placing specially-trained EDF fellows in companies, cities and universities as dedicated energy problem solvers. Working with hundreds of leading organizations, EDF Climate Corps has uncovered nearly $1.3 billion in energy savings. For more information, visit edfclimatecorps.org. Read our blog at edfclimatecorps.org/blog. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/edfbiz and on Facebook at facebook.com/EDFClimateCorps.