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January 28, 2016 -
Building occupants can help or hinder your energy efficiency efforts. Here are five tips that can help facility managers not only cut energy use, but maintain that lower level of energy consumption.
Tip 1: Survey your occupants about their conservation habits and perceived barriers. Look for patterns in their responses and make a plan that drives quick and easy behavior changes.
Tip 2: Set an energy policy that includes specific goals that can be measured and achieved by occupants and operators. Regularly audit spaces and leave feedback on energy policy compliance or violations. Report results often to sustain engagement throughout the organization.
Tip 3: Create a contest for individuals and teams. Make a leader board for occupants who have agreed to participate in an energy conservation effort. Conduct an energy audit and reward individuals who’ve turned off their computer afterhours. When others see their coworkers involved and see themselves left out, they’ll be more inclined to participate.
Tip 4: Establish clear, regular and simple communications to keep occupants informed and enabled to engage in energy-smart habits. While social science tells us that awareness alone does not necessarily impact behavior, not knowing at all certainly does not help.
Tip 5: To keep energy savings at the top of people’s minds, incorporate simple reminders — stickers that prompt people to turn off equipment, emails encouraging nightly shut-down actions or a 60-day challenge with daily scoring and rewards.
This Quick Read comes from Ashley Ruiz, program manager for McKinstry’s powerED program, a behavior-focused energy awareness and operational efficiency program, and Jesse Sycuro, P.E., CEM, LEED AP, the operations manager for McKinstry’s Energy Management group. Read more from them about ways to use occupant behavior to reduce energy consumption.